"We wish to reinforce that this update does not expand our ability to share data with Facebook," a spokesperson from WhatsApp said today.
"Our aim is to provide transparency and new options available to engage with businesses so they can serve their customers and grow. WhatsApp will always protect personal messages with end-to-end encryption so that neither WhatsApp nor Facebook can see them. We are working to address misinformation and remain available to answer any questions," the spokesperson said.
Writing in the backdrop of a proposed law for Personal data protection, the technology ministry raised concerns about sharing of users' metadata, saying it would form a "honeypot of information" which can create security risks and vulnerabilities for users.
It also questioned the social media platform's "all or nothing approach" which forces users to accept the new policy.
The ministry asked 14 questions, including categories of user data collected, whether it profiled customers based on usage and cross-border data flows.
It is a private app. Don't join it. It is a voluntary thing, don't accept it. Use some other app," Justice Sanjeev Sachdeva said in response to a petition that contended that the updated policy violates the users' Constitutional right to privacy.