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Raj Kumar Makkad (Adv P & H High Court Chandigarh)     24 September 2016

Delhi hc directs whatsapp to delete users' data gathered bef

The Delhi High Court's Chief Justice G. Rohini and Sangita Dhingra Sehgal, J. directed Whatsapp Inc. to delete any user data collected by the messaging company prior to September 25 this year.

Students Karmanya Singh Sareen and Shreya Sethi had filed a PIL challenging the recent change in Whatsapp's user policies. This new policy would allow social media giant, and Whatsapp's parent company, Facebook, access to Whatsapp user's data.

Senior Advocates Pratibha Singh and Sandeep Sethi had argued extensively against the implementation of the new policy. They claimed that the policy was violative of a person's right to privacy.

For the respondents, Senior Advocate Sidharth Luthra had argued that Whatsapp did not retain any user's data except for their phone numbers and names and that the data was encrypted and inaccessible to any person except the sender and the receiver.

The High Court settled the matter today by directing Whatsapp to delete all the information stored on their servers till September 25, and restraining them from sharing this information with Facebook. The bench made this order applicable on all the users' information irrespective of whether or not the users had accepted the new privacy policy.

This was done keeping in mind that the new policy is to be enforced from September 25 and therefore users ought to be given a choice to opt out of the information sharing between the two companies.

The Chief Justice stated –

"We are passing these directions for protection of the interests of the users of Whatsapp."

The bench also directed the Union of India and the TRAI to consider, at the earliest, the feasibility of a regulatory mechanism for applications such as Whatsapp.


 2 Replies

adv.bharat @ PUNE (Lawyer)     24 September 2016

Thank you sir for sharing such valuable information to this forum.

laxmi kant joshi (instructor)     24 September 2016

Thanks sir for providing such nice information.

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