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    Breaking: Turkey urges citizens to abandon WhatsApp over privacy concerns
    NBS | Monday, January 11th, 2021 | Published: 6:00 am

    Breaking: Turkey urges citizens to abandon WhatsApp over privacy concerns

    The Turkish government has urged its citizens to quit WhatsApp and use local messaging services amid concerns over the application’s new controversial privacy policy.

    According to Press TV, Whatsapp on Thursday asked its users to agree to its new privacy policy, which would allow it to share more data with parent company Facebook, or lose access to the app.

    The update sparked criticism as it forces the messaging app’s nearly two billion users to agree to the breach of their private and possibly sensitive data.

    In reaction to the new privacy terms, the Turkish government’s Presidential Communications Directorate on Sunday said it would quit WhatsApp and would, instead, use BiP, a local app developed by the country’s leading mobile phone operator Turkcell, to brief journalists.

    The hashtag #WhatsAppSiliyoruz (We Are Deleting WhatsApp) has been trending on Twitter in Turkey in the past few days.

    Ali Taha Koc, Head of the Turkish Presidential Digital Transformation Office, on Saturday decried the new terms of services as well as the announced exemption of users in the UK and EU from the new data-sharing changes.

    “The distinction between EU member countries and others in terms of data privacy is unacceptable! As we have cited in the Information and Communication Security Guideline, foreign origin applications bear significant risks regarding data security,” he tweeted.

    “That’s why we need to protect our digital data with local and national software and develop them in line with our needs. Let’s not forget that Turkey’s data would stay in Turkey thanks to local and national solutions.”

    He urged Turks to use “national and local” apps, including BiP and Dedi.

    In July, the Turkish parliament passed a law that required social media giants such as Facebook and Twitter to ensure they have representatives in Turkey or face fines and a reduction of internet bandwidth.


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