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EAST LOS ANGELES, Calif., July 27, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Consejo de Latinos Unidos (CDLU), a national advocacy group and public charity, called on U.S. Congressional leaders to probe Facebook for violating the privacy of millions of WhatsApp users contacts and information.
“Two years ago, we opted out of allowing WhatsApp from sharing our most sensitive data—contact information from our smart phones—with Facebook. Our contacts range from victims of rape to high level contacts with the U.S. Department of Justice, and Facebook has no business to be collecting that data,” said K.B. Forbes, Executive Director of the public charity.
Forbes disclosed, “We became concerned when Facebook was asking us to befriend specific people from our contact list. How in the hell did they collect that, we wondered? We directly asked WhatsApp repeatedly via email if our opt-out status was still in effect, and WhatsApp finally replied that ‘WhatsApp is one of the Facebook Companies. WhatsApp works and shares information with the other Facebook Companies.’ They intentionally neglected to tell us about our opt-out status.”
Two years ago, WhatsApp announced they would begin sharing data with Facebook. Millions of users opted out by following online instructions.
Helping the public for over 17 years, the CDLU has been involved in helping victims of crime including several developmentally disabled adult children who were raped at an adult day care center in Southern California.
“Our phone contacts include family members of those victims of rape, some of whom utilize WhatsApp. Facebook has betrayed the public trust and our privacy,” Forbes alleged.
Almost half the Hispanic population (49%) utilizes WhatsApp according to the Pew Research Center.