A tweet raising concerns that WhatsApp may have given the Nigerian Government access to spy on the calls and conversations of Nigerians has drawn diverse reactions from Nigerians on Twitter.
The reactions followed a tweet by activist and good governance advocate Mr. Henry Shield who tweeted: “Dear @WhatsApp, is it true you’ve given the Nigerian Govt access to our calls and messages? You’ll have to reply this message for your subscribers in Nigeria.”
Dear @WhatsApp, is it true you’ve given the Nigerian Govt access to our calls and messages?
You’ll have to reply this message for your subscribers in Nigeria.
— Henry Shield (@henryshield) December 16, 2019
Some of the following reactions can be seen under the tweet:
This is impossible except they want to go down for violating various data protection and privacy regulations like EU GDPR, NDPR among others. It can only be done illegally if at all it’s true and the affected data subjects can sue the living daylight out of them.
— Ikman (@gentleagu) December 16, 2019
Whatsapp, facebook, & instagram have granted d Nigerian government access to all users in Nigeria. If you still have facebook app installed on ur phone, that means u no longer have any privacy. Facebook is monitoring all ur moves, collecting ur datas & giving dem to FGN.
— Green Eshiet Daniel (@greenaetion) December 16, 2019
Softtalk and telegram are more secured and less attractive to govt spy than WhatsApp. It’s high time people start making use of the alternative. @WhatsApp I hope this is not true, you guys better come and explain this nonsense
— Okoro (@OdogwuDab) December 16, 2019
@Twitter highlights magically disappeared after @jack came to Nigeria.
Note: twitter highlight shows most talked-about topics you might have missed which are mainly political issues.
I just don’t trust this regime anymore.
— Akin – Buhari must go. We’ve rejected him (@supernova6) December 16, 2019
Mark Zuckerberg has always made himself an instrument of oppression for politicians with his social media apps. Look at the role Facebook play in America and Russia elections. Do you remember the Cambridge Analytica data scandal? Mark Zuckerberg is no good. I won’t be surprised
— Chigozie Digital Life (@jahblessdigital) December 16, 2019
I don’t trust them. Facebook has been playing with our privacy for long and now that WhatsApp had been acquired by them, anything is possible.
— Vincent Arógbòdó PhD (by affidavit) (@ArogbodoVincent) December 16, 2019
— Papa Ejima (@Chinweike_romeo) December 16, 2019
This cannot be true. WhatsApp is secured by ene-to-end encryption, meaning that WhatsApp itself can’t have access to your calls and messages.
The US government don’t have such access, how much more ordinary Nigeria.
— FLOOR KINGS (@KyngxServices) December 16, 2019
You rate this Nigeria govt too highly. To think WhatsApp will jeopardize their business and customer base for a useless third world govt is beyond me.
— GCFR (@Pr8nz) December 16, 2019
Would it matter? What capacity do they have to monitor and follow the volume of calls and messages anyways? Except they decide to be efficient on something for once, which really can’t be said to be their style.
— Yinka Talker (@yinkatalker) December 16, 2019
WhatsApp is yet to issue a statement in the wake of rising concerns over Mr. Shield’s tweet.
Activists in Nigeria are currently fighting to halt the enactment of a social media regulation law. This is coming after the country’s first lady Aisha Buhari proposed using China as a model for how to regulate comments in the social media.
“If China can control over 1.3 billion people on social media, I see no reason why Nigeria cannot attempt controlling only 180 million people,” Aisha Buhari said, provoking great backlash.
The proposed social media regulation law would criminalise insulting the government online with three years in prison.
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