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Understand why WhatsApp can become illegal in this country

Understand why WhatsApp can become illegal in this country

a WhatsApp It may become illegal in the UK due to a bill requiring social media platforms, including the messaging app, to enforce content moderation policies. Since the app has end-to-end encryption, this can be practically impossible.

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In general, the measure aims to combat hateful content, such as posts that promote terrorism, racism and pedophilia.

The proposal, which could be approved by the House of Lords, sets fines of up to £18m (about R$113m) or 10% of sales to tech companies if the rules are not met.

However, as said, WhatsApp uses end-to-end encryption, which prevents the app itself and anyone, other than the recipient of the message, from accessing the content of the sent messages. However, the social network would not be able to comply with the rules of the law and the alternative would be to leave the UK.

WhatsApp already has a position on becoming illegal in the UK

The 262-page bill was first discussed in 2019, during the government of former Prime Minister Theresa May, and was published in May 2021.

The country’s media regulator, Ofcom, will be able to impose requirements on social networks and solicit information from companies. The goal is to protect people from harm online and to fight misinformation.

WhatsApp director Will Cathcart said in March 2023 that he would not remove the security system simply to comply with UK law. He noted that 98% of the app’s users are from outside the UK and do not want to compromise the security of the product. Lowering the app’s security, Cathcart said, would only affect the majority of the 98% and would be an odd choice.

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The analysis of the initiative is supposed to be completed on May 25, and the next session is scheduled for Tuesday (9). The bill has already passed through the House of Commons, the lower house of the legislature.