“The order aims to secure the rights and freedoms of millions of users which are agreeing to the terms Germany-wide. We need to prevent damage and disadvantages linked to such a black-box procedure,” Caspar said in a statement. The new terms are “intransparent, inconsistent, and overly broad,” he added. He has also asked European Union regulators to issue a similar order that covers users across the continent.
Caspar is also taking into account the possibility of Facebook misusing the information it collects from WhatsApp users to influence the German federal elections in September. Germany has nearly 60 million WhatsApp users.
Facebook has denied any wrongdoing, of course. The company labeled Caspar’s claims “wrong” and said the order would not stop it from rolling out the new policy. These actions are “based on a fundamental misunderstanding” of the new policy’s purpose and effect, Facebook’s WhatsApp unit told Bloomberg in an emailed statement.
However, now that Germany has issued an emergency ban on it, Facebook may have more troubles coming its way. It could pave way for regulators in other territories to also consider similar moves and thoroughly look into the matter.