Following yesterday’s launch of Instagram’s data-download tool, WhatsApp has now announced that its next update due in the coming weeks will bring a similar feature of its own.
This is necessary for WhatsApp to comply with the data portability rule in European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) privacy law that goes into effect on May 25.
In the coming weeks, you will be able to see and download your WhatsApp account information and settings. This feature, Request Account Info, will be rolling out to all users around the world on the newest version of the app.
According to WhatsApp, users will be able to download their account information which includes their profile photograph, group names and current account settings. Customers’ instant messages won’t be included in the download because people have been able to back up and export their entire messaging history using WhatsApp’s existing built-in tools.
The company also clarified it does not share data with Facebook:
We are not currently sharing account information to improve your product and ads experience on Facebook. As we have said in the past, we want to work closer with other Facebook companies in the future and we will keep you updated as we develop our plans.
The only pieces of information being shared between Facebook and WhatsApp: security info and anti-spam data which helps them block bad actors and fight spam.
Moreover, the company has increased the minimum age to use its service from 13 to 16 in Europe. In other markets, the minimum age to use WhatsApp is still 13.
And last but not least, WhatsApp has established an entity within the European Union in order to provide its services there in a way that complies with EU’s privacy and data protection laws.