WhatsApp has announced a change to its terms and privacy policy and as per the updated policy, it will start sharing users’ phone number with Facebook. It is the part of the some of the account information that it will be sharing with its owner for delivering “better friend suggestions and more relevant ads” on latter.

In an official blog post, WhatsApp said, “But by coordinating more with Facebook, we’ll be able to do things like track basic metrics about how often people use our services and better fight spam on WhatsApp. And by connecting your phone number with Facebook’s systems, Facebook can offer better friend suggestions and show you more relevant ads if you have an account with them.”

This new move from WhatsApp is quite strange as well as expected. It is strange because of the fact that it has always been vocal about protecting and securing users’ privacy. It is the reason it released end-to-end encryption earlier this year but the move was also expected ever since Facebook acquired the world’s most popular instant messaging service with over a billion installs on the Play Store.

WhatsApp has assured in the announcement that messages are encrypted and no one (neither WhatsApp nor Facebook) can read them. It also says, “We won’t post or share your WhatsApp number with others, including on Facebook, and we still won’t sell, share, or give your phone number to advertisers.”

But if you are still skeptical about WhatsApp’s claims and don’t want to share your phone number with Facebook, you have two ways to opt out of it. The first method is to scroll down to the T&C page on WhatsApp on your device and check the box that says opt out of sharing data. If you have already accepted these T&C, you need to launch WhatsApp and visit Settings>Account and opt out.

You can also read FAQs and updated privacy policy.

What do you think of this move from WhatsApp? Share your views with us using the comments section below.