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WhatsApp Co-Founder Jan Koum to Leave Facebook Koum announced his decision in a Facebook post saying, “I'm taking some time off to do things I enjoy outside of technology"


JAN KOUM, the billionaire co-founder of WhatsApp, is leaving the company.

Koum announced his decision in a Facebook post in which he said “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.”

His move comes soon after Washington Post reported that Koum had clashed with Facebook over its plans to weaken the messaging app’s encryption and attempts to use its personal data.

Koum and co-founder Brian Acton had sold WhatsApp to Facebook in 2014 for $19 billion, its biggest acquisition till date. Acton, who quit Facebook last year, had told his Twitter followers to #deletefacebook after concerns over data privacy surfaced in the Cambridge Analytica scandal in March.

Facebook has been battling concerns over issues with data breach, privacy and protection ever since the Cambridge Analytica incident. Mark Zuckerberg, co-founder and CEO of Facebook, promised to defend its values and pledged to correct its mistakes in a U.S. Senate hearing in April.

Koum and Acton had been protective of WhatsApp’s encryption, data privacy and its monetisation methods, and had even taken an assurance from Facebook at the time of the acquisition that WhatsApp data would not be shared.

“I’m leaving at a time when people are using WhatsApp in more ways than I could have imagined, Koum wrote, “And I’ll still be cheering WhatsApp on – just from the outside.”

Zuckerberg liked Koum’s post and wrote in his comment: “I’m grateful for everything you’ve done to help connect the world, and for everything you’ve taught me, including about encryption and its ability to take power from centralized systems and put it back in people’s hands.”

No date has been announced for Koum’s departure.









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