Jan Koum, WhatsApp Co-founder leaves Facebook Amidst Privacy Issues

WhatsApp’s privacy loving co-founder skips out on Facebook as privacy issues grow.

Jan Koum, the co-founder of WhatsApp, and who sold the company to Facebook announced today that he is leaving the company. In a letter published by Jan Koum, he does not mention the privacy issue with Facebook itself, but writes that he will be available for other jobs such as his luxury car collection or a Frisbee game.

When he and his partner Brian Acton sold WhatsApp to Facebook for $ 19 billion in 2014, he promised that WhatsApp would remain independent and that it would not be part of Facebook and would not share data with it. In reality Facebook has started to connect the company’s servers to WhatsApp and also recently announced that WhatsApp will share user information between the two. This caused many countries worldwide to enact regulations against the matter.

Read Jan Koum’s farewell letter,

 It’s been almost a decade since Brian and I started WhatsApp, and it’s been an amazing journey with some of the best people. But it is time for me to move on. I’ve been blessed to work with such an incredibly small team and see how a crazy amount of focus can produce an app used by so many people all over the world.

I’m leaving at a time when people are using WhatsApp in more ways than I could have imagined. The team is stronger than ever and it’ll continue to do amazing things. I’m taking some time off to do things I enjoy outside of technology, such as collecting rare air-cooled Porsches, working on my cars and playing ultimate frisbee. And I’ll still be cheering WhatsApp on – just from the outside. Thanks to everyone who has made this journey possible. Thanks to everyone who has made this journey possible.

As mentioned above, the reports that appear today on the internet say that Jan Koum did not agree to Facebook’s privacy practices and therefore decided to leave. Jan Koum was considered to place privacy as a priority, and was the one that pushed for WhatsApp’s end to end encryption. 

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