WhatsApp co-founder, Brian Action joins call to #DeleteFacebook

Brian Action, a co-founder of WhatsApp has backed calls for users to delete their profiles on Facebook amid the backlash against its handling of personal data.

Brian Acton tweeted: “It is time. #deletefacebook” as the hashtag trended amid growing outrage over the social media giant’s links to controversial British data firm Cambridge Analytica (CA).

Along with WhatsApp co-founder Jan Koum, Acton sold the app to Facebook for 19 billion dollars (£11.4 billion) in 2014.The entrepreneur’s apparent advocacy for people to remove their profiles came as Facebook faced pressure to explain its privacy safeguards from regulators and politicians in the US and UK.

CA was suspended from the social media giant last week after it emerged that data on 50 million users had not been destroyed as agreed.Founder Mark Zuckerberg was called on to explain the company’s data protection procedures to MPs in person.

 Damian Collins, chairman of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee wrote to Mr Zuckerberg on Tuesday requesting that the firm explains the “catastrophic” failure.

Neither  Mark Zuckerberg nor the chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, have made any public statement about the scandal, attracting further criticism over a lack of leadership. Nor were they present at an all-hands meeting for employees at Menlo Park, California, earlier in the day, led by the company’s deputy general counsel, Paul Grewal.

Deleting an app may still allow the developer to retain some of a user’s personal information.WhatsApp has itself been the subject of criticism by Governments and security services in recent years for providing a means for criminals and terrorists to evade surveillance.