WhatsApp messaging service was blocked in Brazil for the second time since Mid-December for failing to comply with an order to turn over data in a criminal investigation.
A judge in Brazil ordered on Monday that phone companies block Facebook’s messaging service WhatsApp throughout the country for 72 hours in response to its refusal to cooperate in a police investigation. Also pastIn December, a judge in Sao Paulo ordered WhatsApp be blocked for 48 hours after it refused to comply with a court order, affecting its more than 100 million local users and eliciting outrage on social media in Brazil. Brazil is the one of the most user in termed of social networking user. The block was lifted in about 12 hours. In March, federal police detaineda Facebook executive for failing to cooperate with judicial orders related to information on the company’s website in an investigation of drug trafficking.
Judge Marcel Montalvao delivered the order because WhatsApp would not turn over information that could relate to an investigation into narcotics activity and an interstate gang. The ban will go into effect at 2 p.m. local time, Bloomberg reports, and the fine to phone companies for not blocking the app would be about $143,000 per day.
This is the second time in six months a judge has suspended the service in Brazil, though a court overturned the previous decision in December.
“After cooperating to the full extent of our ability with the local courts, we are disappointed a judge in Sergipe decided yet again to order the block of WhatsApp in Brazil,” WhatsApp said in a statement. “This decision punishes more than 100 million Brazilians who rely on our service to communicate, run their businesses, and more, in order to force us to turn over information we repeatedly said we don’t have.”