WhatsApp boss and co-founder to quit

Alicia Cross
May 2, 2018

Brian Acton, who co-founded WhatsApp with Koum, announced his departure from Facebook previous year. However, it seems that Koum has been worn down with clashing opinions and also plans to step down from Facebook's board of directors.

In the thick of Facebook's most recent controversy, WhatsApp's other co-founder, Brian Acton, who left Facebook and WhatsApp previous year to start a nonprofit, tweeted: "It is time. I've been blessed to work with such an incredibly small team and see how a insane amount of focus can produce an app used by so many people all over the world", he wrote. The team is stronger than ever and it'll continue to do awesome things.

In his post, Koum thanked people and stated that it was his time to "move on". I'm leaving at a time when people use Whatsapp to a greater extent than I could imagine.

Koum does not appear to have responded to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg's comment on the post.

Jan Koum, the co-founder of the Facebook-owned WhatsApp messenger, is "feeling emotional".

Yet despite all this, WhatsApp is the most popular messaging app on the planet with over 1.5 billion users. However, it could prove to be a great revenue and data mining source for information-hungry Facebook as it may provide it with a legitimate loophole to bypass the apps end-to-end encryption for collecting private data of users.

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Meanwhile, after Facebook, another major social media outlet Twitter has now been caught up in the data scandal involving Cambridge Analytica, the British political consulting firm which collected the data of almost 87 million Facebook users without their knowledge and permission, according to a media report.

- In January 2012, a hacker published a how to, on changing the status of an arbitrary WhatsApp user, as long as the phone number was known.

3- Despite Facebook's apparent promise to leave WhatsApp alone after the sale, the social media company gradually started interfering with WhatsApps working. There's always been friction between WhatsApp and Facebook leadership due to the nature of the respective companies-the former promised encryption and user privacy, and the latter makes money by charging advertisers for access to user data, leading to what GBH Insights' Daniel Ives called a "massive culture clash".

Unsurprisingly, insiders told WaPo that Koum's beliefs don't jive with Facebook's philosophy on user data and the company's attempts to use personal data from WhatsApp's encrypted messaging platform. He also endorsed the #deletefacebook campaign which was triggered by the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

Indeed, such was the controversy that Facebook had to suspend in November 2016 data sharing between its social network and WhatsApp across the European Union. Brian Acton, for that matter, has joined the rising voices of people concerned about data protection. In many a platform he repeated and reasserted that the messaging app would remain privacy-focussed and ad-less.

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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