Facebook ordered to explain how WhatsApp merger would avoid breaking data laws

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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has plans to combine the infrastructure of Facebook Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp and add the option of end to end encryption for users, according to a report from the New York Times published on January 25. This new development will only allow users to send messages to a WhatsApp friend or group using Instagram Direct-the messaging service built inside Instagram-or Facebook Messenger and vice versa.

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) announced its latest plans to integrate all the messaging services related to Facebook, such Facebook messenger, Instagram and the WhatsApp at one place, as a part of an overall technical undertaking for the betterment of user security on its platforms.

Thousands of Facebook staff are now working to reconfigure the system to accommodate such changes.

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With the process underway, Zuckerberg intends for the project to be completed by year's end or in early 2020. At the moment, such encryption is only available on WhatsApp.

According to a Facebook spokesperson, they are trying to make the message experience better than ever, making it more convenient and simple and reliable. However, other data protection officials will be watching closely. Acquiring companies tend to promise they'll leave a purchased asset alone, but it never lasts - for mostly good reason. Facebook requires people to use their real names in their social-network profiles, but Instagram doesn't. To make messaging among the apps easier, an integrated system will soon be introduced.

Facebook has made recent headlines in the debate of user privacy and the collection of personal information. The three Apps should remain independent of the underlying technology, however, should be standardized. This would allow, for example, to find a Whatsapp user in Facebook. The policy claims to come, especially since the data scandal Cambridge Analytica again and again, Facebook had to be forced to separate from the Messaging services. Right now, Facebook controls three of those eight social apps, in addition to WhatsApp. European regulators could and should ask Facebook tough questions if it unifies its empire of apps.

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In developed countries, the advertising business of social networking platforms, which is their main source of revenue, is reaching a saturation point.

It is unknown for when the unification is planned for, but one thing's for sure: Facebook is betting that the move won't upset too numerous 2.6 billion users of its three messaging services.

But users will always have a choice when its comes to messaging platforms.

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