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Taming WhatsApp, FB In Tech Guru George Gilder’s Way!

The privacy debate is haunting people yet again.

A few days back, WhatsApp asked users to consent to its updated privacy policy by February 8.  This, however, drew heavy criticism from users that prompted the Indian government to intervene. 

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The ministry of information and technology asked WhatsApp to repeal its updated policy in a letter and raised concerns about impinging the autonomy of the citizens.

To curb fake news, Modi govt asks WhatsApp CEO to hire India watchdog

IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said businesses are free to do business as long as it complies with the laws of the land. 

In response, WhatsApp extended the deadline to accept the updated privacy policy to May 15.

Why is Whatsapp updating its policy? What gains will it get?

The updated policy would give WhatsApp the right to share user data, including location, phone number, contacts list, and usage pattern, with Facebook and its units such as Instagram and Messenger. 

This helps Facebook to make a fortune by monetizing users’ attention. They let people use their services for free. In return, these firms sell billions of dollars in advertising aimed at the users, tailored to their interests.

There is no harm here. But, there are some troublesome aspects. It gives tremendous scope for the hackers and phishers to steal web-based information, personal emails, and credit cards, for example.

These problems are inadequately addressed by unreliable passwords, two-step verification, and elaborate rigmarole done by Facebook.

These problems don’t end with hackers and online thieves. Most of them multiples with Facebook which has been accused of stealing data.

So, what is the solution? Should the central government use the hammer to suppress them?

Yes, it should when there is an uproarious demand from the people who have voted it to power. Uganda did exactly the same after it felt that the Big Tech would rig its election as they did during the 2020 US election.

But, banning comes with a cost. The country would lose billions of dollars to tech-friendly countries like Singapore. Therefore, it should be the last resort to tame the incorrigible tech.

Fotos de Whatsapp, imagem para Whatsapp ✓ Melhores imagens | Depositphotos®

However, it is always a better option to give a chance to the Big Tech to obey the laws of the land. And, if there is no law in place, people would bloody well not use Whatsapp or Facebook. There are some good alternatives available online. Thanks to the “Cancel Culture” the Big Tech has adopted.

Is there any solution other than the solutions mentioned above?

Of course. It is called Cryptocosm which powers a network of organizations, systems, companies, and individuals, by blockchain technologies.

These technologies work on the principles of the decentralized and peer-to-peer Internet system, which keeps the crucial IDs and personal data, and pointers to storage addresses in a secure and immutable database on its platform.

This will allow people to regain ownership and control of their own data. 

If this sounds interesting enough then the book – Life After Google: The Fall of Big Data and The Rise of the Blockchain Economy – authored by high tech guru George Gilder is a worthwhile time investment as it dives deep into this topic.

Hope, our IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad is listening and works with Gilder. 

Jai Hind.

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