What's Up with WhatsApp? Our Tech Expert Weighs In - Hope 103.2

What’s Up with WhatsApp? Our Tech Expert Weighs In

Hope Breakfast spoke with Geoff Quattromani from the 'Technology Uncorked' podcast to find out if WhatsApp's new privacy policy should cause alarm bells.

Listen: Tech expert Geoff Quattromani on WhatsApp's privacy policy changes and whether or not you should be concerned

By Sam RobinsonThursday 25 Feb 2021Hope BreakfastLifeReading Time: 2 minutes

Facebook has dominated the headlines over the last few weeks following its removal of all news from its platform in Australia – but simmering behind that story has been the discussion over its messaging service WhatsApp.

Many of us use WhatsApp daily for group instant messaging, but the Facebook-owned freeware updated its privacy policy in mid-January with a 4000 word document that has some users concerned, especially because if users don’t agree to it by May 15, they will be blocked from sending and receiving messages.

Tech expert Geoff Quattromani of 'Technology Uncorked' podcast appearing on Channel 7

Source: Geoff Quattromani Facebook

Hope Breakfast spoke with Geoff Quattromani from the Technology Uncorked podcast to find out if this new privacy policy should cause alarm bells.

“The biggest change is that businesses that work with Facebook will start to be able to use WhatsApp to engage with its customers,” Geoff said.

“For example, if you have a Facebook page as a business, if you choose to do customer service via Facebook, you’ll be using WhatsApp as your engine to do that. So what WhatsApp now needs to have is tighter integration with the Facebook platform to actually allow that communication to come through. It really does just affect businesses here.”

So why, then, has WhatsApp users been leaving the service in droves since the new privacy policy was released?

“There’s always going to be backlash when a privacy policy changes because people instantly start thinking about what it actually means for them,” Geoff said.

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“Most people when they first sign up to most applications or social media services, they hit accept before they even read the privacy policy. But when you make a policy change while you’re already a user, it can raise alarm bells. But based on what I’ve seen and what I understand, I don’t think it’s something people should be too concerned about.”

If you’re curious about other options for messaging, Geoff explains there’s a number of freeware options out there.

“Signal and Telegram both have strong encryption, just like WhatsApp does. They also allow group chats and the sharing of images and videos. They are free as well,” he said.

You can hear the full conversation with Geoff Quattromani about WhatsApp in the player above.