The deadline to accept the new policy was originally purposed to take effect by February 8th but mass confusion from users about data sharing led WhatsApp to delay the update and deadline by three months.
WhatsApp has spent those months repeatedly clarifying that the new policy does not affect user chats or other profile information, but is focused on conversations happening between a client and an organization’s customer service on WhatsApp’s business platform.
A WhatsApp spokesperson in late May said that they have come to this decision after holding discussions with various authorities and privacy experts. It is during this same period that the messaging service sued the Indian government over a new regulation that would make people’s private messages traceable by the authorities.
“Civil society and technical experts around the world have consistently argued that a requirement to ‘trace’ private messages would break end-to-end encryption and lead to real abuse” read their statement.
Although users will no longer lose access to the app if they didn’t agree to the new terms of service agreement, users will still get reminded about the new policy if they haven’t accepted it.
“We will continue to remind users from time to time and let them accept the update, including when they choose to use relevant optional features like communicating with a business that is receiving support from Facebook,” WhatsApp said.