Elon Musk lashes out at WhatsApp for its privacy issues: should we be worried?

criticizes and raises questions about the app's privacy. Find out why and how to protect yourself from this potential problem.

Elon Musk calls out WhatsApp's privacy issues

After recent reports claiming that WhatsApp would allegedly listen to its users, Elon Musk, the CEO of and SpaceX, has decided to openly criticize the app. For him, this messaging tool “is not trustworthy,” as he mentioned in a tweet. This is not the first time he has expressed his dissatisfaction with 's services or its leader.

Elon Musk's criticism comes just days after he confronted , calling him an “extremely partisan” person. Moreover, the statements come two years after Musk posted the message “#DeleteFacebook it's lame” on his account.

What's wrong with WhatsApp?

According to Foad Dabiri, an engineer at Twitter, the messaging service is allegedly using users' microphone without their permission. “WhatsApp has been using the microphone in the background while I was asleep and since I woke up at 6am (and that's just part of the timeline). What's going on?” he wondered on Twitter.

Foad Dabiri is not the only one who noticed this strange phenomenon. Other users reported on different platforms that the microphone usage indicator was constantly turning on, and the culprit was usually WhatsApp. This is the case of Bikash Mahato, who shared his concerns on forums in March this year.

Elon Musk provokes an investigation from Google

Following Musk's statements on Twitter and the popularization of Foad Dabiri's tweet, WhatsApp has published an official response. According to them, this is an error that incorrectly assigns information in the privacy settings. Thus, they have asked Google to conduct an investigation to resolve the issue as soon as possible.

How to prevent WhatsApp from activating the microphone in the background

Most of the reports about WhatsApp using the microphone in the background come from Google Pixel users, including the Pixel 7 series. However, this is not limited to these models, as there are also complaints from people using Samsung Galaxy devices, including the S23 series.

How can we solve this problem temporarily? Here are some ways to prevent WhatsApp from using the microphone in the background, pending a future update of the service or Android, if necessary:

Update the app: after downloading the latest available version of WhatsApp and restarting your phone, some users report the problem disappears.

Reset WhatsApp permissions: remove and reassign the various permissions the service uses on your device. Then restart the device.

The privacy issues raised by Elon Musk regarding WhatsApp are worth considering. While waiting for an update to the app or Android to resolve this issue, it is recommended to follow the steps mentioned above to protect your privacy. Stay alert and informed about any developments in this situation.