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CCI probe 'headline-grabbing endeavour': WhatsApp tells Delhi HC

The Delhi High Court reserved its order on the challenge by Facebook and WhatsApp to the CCI probe on WhatsApp's new privacy policy.

April 13, 2021 / 04:03 PM IST
it was not for the CCI to decide if the Facebook-owned app's privacy policy was compliant with privacy norms, WhatsApp said. (Representative image)

it was not for the CCI to decide if the Facebook-owned app's privacy policy was compliant with privacy norms, WhatsApp said. (Representative image)

WhatsApp, on April 13, told the Delhi High Court that the Competition Commission of India's (CCI) probe into the messaging platform's privacy policy was a "headline-grabbing endeavour".

"The matter is pending before the Supreme Court. This is a headline-grabbing endeavour" said Senior Advocate Harish Salve, appearing for WhatsApp, as quoted by Bar & Bench.

"This is not a competition issue. Recently, WhatsApp came up with an updated policy. It doesn't change the privacy policy. They had given an opt-out for pre-2016 customers. Now it's only an amplification. CCI has jumped the gun and started proceedings" the Senior Advocate said.

Salve said it was not for the CCI to decide if the Facebook-owned app's privacy policy was compliant with privacy norms.

Appearing for the CCI, Additional Solicitor General Aman Lekhi said the analysis of data will give more information about a user than physical stalking.

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"They are dealing with excessive data collection, use and sharing of it, in anti competitive context," the Additional Solicitor General said.

Lekhi also said the question is whether access to data would lead to abuse of dominant position.

"Who is calling whom, through which device, when and for what purpose, customer profiling and consumer preference will be monetize and lead to network effect. It is open for both WhatsApp and Facebook to dominate and abuse," Lekhi said.

The Additional Solicitor General said that data sharing will enable targeted advertising and customer profiling.

The Delhi High Court reserved its order on the challenge by Facebook and WhatsApp to the CCI probe on WhatsApp's new privacy policy.

WhatsApp, which has 530 million users in India, plans to roll out the policy from May 15, 2021.
Moneycontrol News
TAGS: #WhatsApp
first published: Apr 13, 2021 03:32 pm

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