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Dark side of WhatsApp

We all see WhatsApp as an amazing app because it connects us to friends and family in a far better way than E-mail or text messages ever did. And of course, it does this for free. But there are negatives to every positive so let’s have a look at the dark side of WhatsApp.

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Small print

Be honest with yourself, do you read the small print when you agreed to install the latest version of the messenger app? Nope, neither do we. Perhaps you should. WhatApp reserve the right to make changes to their terms and conditions whenever they like. Most firms who have this clause in their terms and conditions don’t use it, so the hope or expectation is that WhatsApp never will.

Minimum age

Did you realise that there’s a minimum age to use this app? According to the Ts and Cs, users must be at least 16 years old. If they’re not, parental permission is required to use the app.

Confidentiality

Did you realise that WhatsApp can’t guarantee that your conversations remain confidential? That’s because they can’t guarantee that the data you send to your friends and family through the app is transferred without being intercepted. There doesn’t seem to be any chance that things will change in the short or long term so perhaps you should be careful what you write.

WhatsApp chats

WhatsApp chats are never erased. Instead they’re simply hidden and archived in the database of the app. That means that your data is vulnerable if your phone is lost or stolen. Again, another reason to watch what you say through the app.

Contacts

Did you realise how much data WhatsApp takes from your smartphone’s contacts page? We have to send our phone numbers to the app to identify us but that’s not the only time that WhatsApp linked to our address books. All of the details added about your contact at the point in which he or she become a friend on WhatsApp is used by the app. The app works on the basis that it has permission from each contact to look at the private information because they’re a WhatsApp user. Is this a problem? Probably not, but it’s not something that most of us are aware of.

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