ICO calls for government to review its use of WhatsApp

The ICO has investigated the use of private correspondence channels (including private email, WhatsApp and other similar communication channels) by Ministers and officials at the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) during the pandemic.

The ICO found that the lack of clear controls and the rapid increase in the use of messaging apps and technologies – such as WhatsApp – had the potential for important information around the government’s response to the pandemic being lost or insecurely handled.

The investigation started in 2021 when Elizabeth Denham was the Information Commissioner. The current Information Commissioner, John Edwards, said:

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