WhatsApp plans a feature that prevents certain contacts from seeing the last time it was active

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WhatsApp may add a new parameter in the privacy section that will give users the ability to prevent certain contacts from seeing the last time they were active. The novelty, which will reach the Android and iOS versions of the application, will also apply to the user’s profile photo and biography.

WhatsApp is preparing an improvement to its instant messaging application that promises to give those who use it a little more control over their privacy. The feature prevents certain contacts from checking the last time a user was active in the application.

Currently, through the settings section, users can decide who can and cannot see their profile details, including the last time they were online. In this section, you can make the information visible to everyone, or just your contacts, as well as make it “invisible.”

According to the WaBetaInfo website, WhatsApp will add a new parameter in the privacy section. Through it, users will be able to prevent specific contacts from seeing the last time they were active. The novelty, which will reach the Android and iOS versions of the application, will also apply to the user’s profile photo and biography.

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By all indications, the feature is still under development and, for now, it is unclear whether will appear in the next update to the application or whether it will be released much later.

It should be remembered that, over the last few years, WhatsApp has been facing a series of problems related to the privacy of its users. Also in early September, the Data Protection Commission of Ireland (DPC) imposed a fine of 225 million euros on WhatsApp for violating data protection laws .

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The DPC investigation, which started three years ago, investigated whether the messaging application, owned by Facebook, acted transparently when it informed users and non-users about agreement with RGDP rules.

The WhatsApp privacy policy update has also sparked a wave of protests, prompting many users to look for other instant messaging applications. In July, it was at the base of a flood of complaints by consumer protection organizations.

The European Consumer Organization (BEUC) and eight of its members have filed complaints with the European Commission and the European network of consumer protection authorities, saying WhatsApp is unfairly pressuring users to accept its new policies.

Previously several warnings were made that it was necessary to accept the changes in order to continue using the service, in May, the company ended up backing down and changing the access cancellation measure to “persistent” warnings.

For the associations, “WhatsApp failed to explain the nature of the changes in simple and intelligible language.” They also consider that the ambiguity “equals a violation of EU consumer law that forces companies to use clear and transparent terms of the contract and commercial communications,” the same document says.

The groups called on the European network of consumer authorities and EU data protection authorities to work together to address consumer privacy and rights issues.

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