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WhatsApp policy sows conflict

The Delhi High Court on Tuesday said that the CCI’s order directing a probe into the social media platform's policy does not reflect an investigation
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PTI   |   New Delhi   |   Published 14.04.21, 01:54 AM

The Delhi High Court on Tuesday said that competition regulator CCI’s order directing a probe into WhatsApp’s policy does not reflect an investigation into the abuse of dominant position and rather appears to be concerned with privacy issues of consumers.

“It (order) appears to be concerned with the privacy issues of consumers,” Justice Navin Chawla said in response to the Competition Commission of India’s (CCI) stand that the regulator was not examining the alleged violation of individuals’ privacy which was being looked into by the Supreme Court.

“Your order does not reflect it is an investigation into the alleged abuse of dominant position,” the court said.  

Senior advocate Aman Lekhi, appearing for the CCI, said the new privacy policy of WhatsApp would lead to excessive data collection and “stalking” of consumers for targeted advertising to bring in more users and is therefore, an alleged abuse of dominant position.

“There is no question of jurisdictional error,” Lekhi said and added that WhatsApp and Facebook's pleas challenging the CCI's decision were “incompetent and misconceived”.

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