13/10/2021

The Guardian

Cabinet Office policy requires ministers to delete WhatsApp messages

As a judicial review into the government’s use of self-destructing messages gets the go-ahead, it has been revealed in court that ministers and civil servants are required by policy to set instant messaging chats to delete automatically. The Cabinet Office policy says: “Instant messaging is provided to all staff and should be used in preference to email for routine communications where there is no need to retain a record of the communication. Instant messages history in individual and group chats must be switched off and should not be retained once a session is finished. If the content of an instant message is required for the record or as an audit trail, a note for the record should be created and the message content saved in that.”

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