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Delhi HC dismisses WhatsApp and Meta’s plea against CCI probe into privacy policy

WhatsApp and its parent company Meta had argued in the Delhi HC that probing WhatsApp’s privacy policy is outside the CCI’s remit

What’s the news: The Delhi High Court on August 25 dismissed WhatsApp’s and its parent company Meta’s pleas against the Competition Commission of India’s (CCI) plans to launch a probe the messaging app’s privacy policy, reported LiveLaw. Division Bench comprising of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad passed its judgement that was reserved since July 25 and said that "the appeals filed by the Appellants are devoid of merit and substance that would warrant the interference of this Court.” In April 2021, Justice Navin Chawla had also dismissed the companies’ pleas citing similar reasons. As per the court order, "The 2021 Policy, however, places its users in a “take-it-or-leave-it” situation, virtually forcing its users into agreement by providing a mirage of choice, and then sharing their sensitive data with Facebook companies envisaged in the policy." Why it matters: Earlier, WhatsApp had received a clean chit from the CCI in a 2017 regarding its market dominance through its privacy policy. However, the repeated dismissal shows that a previous clean chit doesn’t ensure future clean chits for the company especially considering the lack of privacy and data protection laws in India. The drawn-out case also shows the growing urgency for proper data protection and privacy legislations in the country that will address such cases much faster. CCI brings privacy policy under its purview: Back in 2021, WhatsApp updated its privacy policy in terms of data sharing only to face a huge uproar from its Indian audience. The CCI in…

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I'm interested in the shaping and strengthening of rights in the digital space. I cover cybersecurity, platform regulation, gig worker economy. In my free time, I'm either binge-watching an anime or off on a hike.

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