WhatsApp has announced that it will will share users’ mobile numbers with its parent company Facebook, in what is being seen as a major shift in privacy norms by the social messaging giant.
Maintaining that messages on the service will remain encrypted by default, the messaging platform reaffirmed that it will not allow banner advertisements from third parties on the platform.
This change in policy, after founder Jan Koum reassured users during the 2014 buyout by Facebook that privacy will be protected is justified in the company’s reassurance that this will simply allow for more relevant advertisements and friend recommendations on Facebook, according to a WhatsApp blog post.
WhatsApp, however, sought to reassure users by saying that it would not sell, share, or give users’ phone numbers to advertisers.
The company also maintained that messages on the service were encrypted by default and that it would not allow banner advertisements from third parties.
a WhatsApp post however said that users could choose not to share account information with Facebook.