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Will Facebook's cross-app messaging protect your privacy?

Wednesday - September 30, 2020 9:43 pm , Category : SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
San Francisco, Sep 30 (IANS) With the launch of coss-app messaging for Instagram and Messenger, Facebook has said that far from infringing on your privacy, the new update will give users more control over who can reach them and how.
In addition to cross-platform messaging due to the integrating of Messenger chat and Instagram direct messages, the update will also let users search for accounts across Instagram and Messenger.
Search results will show an account's username or name and basic profile information for all accounts, both public and private.
However, posts by private accounts will continue to only be visible to friends or followers.
"We will continue to respect your existing privacy settings, and private accounts will work the same way they do today," Facebook's Privacy Policy Manager Nate Cardozo wrote in a blog post.
The new features on Instagram and Messenger are rolling out in a few countries around the world, and will expand globally soon.
Facebook first announced its plan to integrate the messaging services of Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp last year, giving rise to antitrust and privacy concerns.
The Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC) last year even said that "ultimately the proposed integration can only occur in the EU if it is capable of meeting all of the requirements of the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation)."
Europe's GDPR prohibits sharing of data without the consent of the users.
According to a report in CNBC, WhatsApp founders Brian Acton and Jan Koum who quit the organisation had disagreements with Facebook's plans to integrate advertising and other monetisation methods.
However, Facebook on Wednesday said that the new privacy settings will let users decide who reaches your Chats list, who goes to your Message Request folder, and who cannot message or call you at all.
"For example, someone on Instagram can choose not to receive messages from people on Facebook. And if you add your accounts to the new Accounts Center, it's even easier to manage who can reach you across apps," Cardozo said.

--IANS gb/na