WhatsApp is suing the Indian government over new digital rules that will force the messaging service to violate its own privacy protection policies.
The Facebook-owned social platform said rules that require tracing the origin of chats were the equivalent of keeping a “fingerprint of every single message sent on the service”.
In February, the Indian government introduced new regulations to govern content social media and streaming platforms. The ruling for social media said that messaging platforms would need to make provisions for the “identification of the first originator of the information”.
India is WhatsApp’s biggest market, with over 400 million active users. A plea was filed in the high court in Delhi asking it to declare the new rule unconstitutional.
According to BBC News, a WhatsApp spokesperson said: “[The rules] would break end-to-end encryption and fundamentally undermine people’s right to privacy”.
“We have consistently joined civil society and experts around the world in opposing requirements that would violate the privacy of our users. In the meantime, we will also continue to engage with the government of India on practical solutions aimed at keeping people safe, including responding to valid legal requests for the information available to us.”
They added that the traceability of texts would force the collection and storage of billions of messages sent each day for the sole purpose of turning it over to law enforcement agencies. The collection would be from private, third party companies.
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