Data privacy? What’s that you say? In some places that term doesn’t quite exist as we might interpret it. The fact that WeChat shares
all it’s users’ information with the Chinese government is a confirmation of that.
WeChat – in case you don’t know it – is China’s equivalent to WhatsApp or Messenger. On WeChat though, you can do lots and lots of things. Users can send and receive money, read news, post to social networks, book a cab, buy things, order food, pay bills, check in for flights, and even make an appointment with a doctor, and much more. It’s almost a “companion app” for people’s everyday lives. It has over 660 million users, making it one of the most popular apps in the world, and is certainly the top app in China. And… it shares
all some user data with the Chinese government. Or at least, it will give up “certain information… when legally compelled to.”
Unfortunately this fundamentally pro-privacy update was misinterpreted as an admission that we send all user data to the Chinese government. This is not and has never been the case. Our server to user messages are encrypted. In case of criminal investigations, we will provide certain information to law enforcement agencies when legally compelled to do so, which is in line with international practices.
More generally, we would like to emphasize the following points:
We may be required to retain, preserve or disclose your Personal Information for a longer period of time:
- – in order to comply with a court order, subpoena or other legal process;
- – in response to a request by a government authority, law enforcement agency or similar body (whether situated in your jurisdiction or elsewhere);
- – where we believe it is reasonably necessary to comply with applicable laws or regulations; or
app with the lowest regard to protecting private information.