UK watchdog seeks review into government use of WhatsApp, messaging apps


LONDON (Reuters) – Britain ought to review the use of WhatsApp, personal emails and different messaging apps by ministers and government officers after an investigation discovered “insufficient knowledge safety” through the COVID-19 pandemic, its knowledge safety watchdog stated on Monday.

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) stated the review ought to look at the “systemic dangers” across the use of personal correspondence channels and to make sure enhancements have been made.

“I perceive the worth of instantaneous communication that one thing like WhatsApp can carry, significantly through the pandemic the place officers have been pressured to make fast choices and work to fulfill various calls for.” stated John Edwards, the UK Information Commissioner.

“However, the worth of utilizing these strategies, though not in opposition to the regulation, should not end in a scarcity of transparency and insufficient knowledge safety,” he added.

The suggestion follows a year-long investigation into the use of such messaging channels by government ministers and officers on the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) through the COVID pandemic.

The IOC stated the investigation discovered a “lack of clear controls” and the potential of essential info “being misplaced or insecurely dealt with”.

(Reporting by Farouq Suleiman; enhancing by Michael Holden)

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