WhatsApp warns about message privacy in first U.S. campaign

The Meta-owned company promises security for app users

Published On
Jan 28, 2022

Editor's Pick

Over the years, data privacy has held steady as a hot issue among tech debates that come and go. In its first U.S. campaign, the Meta- formerly-known-as-Facebook-owned messaging service WhatsApp tackles the issue of privacy by telling viewers they may be texting unsafely.

The ad, directed by “The Queen of Versailles” and “Generation Wealth” filmmaker Lauren Greenfield, depicts a nosy mailman who just can’t resist tearing into envelopes and packages before they make it to their intended recipients. As he hands off pieces of mail with letters, forms and bills spilling out of them, each person is shocked that their belongings have been opened already. 

“This has all of my information on it,” says an exacerbated young woman. “I know. I saw,” responds the mailman, as if that’s normal.

He asks if privacy is important and the unanimous response is a resounding yes. According to the spot, 5.5 billion unencrypted texts are sent every day and each one is as open as this mailman’s letters.

In its default setting, WhatsApp offers end-to-end message encryption so that anything from LOL to SSN sent over text isn’t available for prying eyes. The app is already extremely popular in other countries—it’s the top communications app globally—but it hasn’t landed as strongly in the American market.

"It’s exciting to introduce WhatsApp to the U.S. and share the benefits of using an end-to-end encrypted messaging service,” said Will Cathcart, head of WhatsApp, in a statement. “WhatsApp secures your conversations with end-to-end encryption, which means that not even WhatsApp can see your messages. With billions of unencrypted texts still being sent in the country every day, we think it’s important that people in the U.S. understand message privacy and the value of encryption in keeping conversations private."

The new campaign arrives on the heels of a tumultuous 2021 for WhatsApp parent Meta. At the time of its rebrand from Facebook, the company had been mired in negative press around the whistleblower scandal and data breaches, leading observers to question whether a new name could help distance it from that rocky history. The WhatsApp interface previously included references to Facebook, but as with other former Facebook properties, the messaging platform now displays “WhatsApp from Meta.”

The ad will premiere this Sunday during the AFC championship game and continue to run on social, digital video, OOH and broadcast TV channels across the country.

Credits

Date
Jan 28, 2022
Client :
WhatsApp
Agency :
BBDO-San Francisco
Head of Marketing :
Eshan Ponnadurai
Head of Brand :
Vivian Odior
Brand Marketing Manager :
Jennie Morel
Creative Producer :
Eric Rottenberg
Chief Creative Officer :
Thiago Cruz
Global Creative Lead :
Tres Colacion
Global Strategy Lead :
Jose Higuera
Global SVP Group Account Director :
Minjia Qiu
Global Account Director :
Disha Jain
Global Account Executive :
Amanda Chau
Senior Copywriter :
Emmanuel Rocha
Senior Art Director :
Jorge Diaz
Designer :
Fiona Slater
SVP Head of Integrated Production :
Louise Doherty
Executive Producer :
Erin Sullivan
Business Affairs Manager :
Tricia Krasneski
Director of Business Affairs :
Jacqueline Djanikian
Production Company :
Girl Culture Films
Founder/Creative Director :
Lauren Greenfield
Founder/President :
Frank Evers
Executive Producer :
Jenn Ingalls
Managing Director :
Tori Palmatier
Director :
Lauren Greenfield
DP :
Bob Chappell
Line Producer :
JD Davison
Editorial :
Bread and Butter Post Productions
Editor :
Amanda Perry
Editor :
Andrea MacArthur
Grade :
Company 3
Colorist :
Kath Raisch
Mix :
Lime Studios
Mixer :
Zac Fisher
Finish :
Jane VFX
Artist :
David Parker
Title :
The Vinciguerra Affair
Artist :
Daniel Pemberton
Written by :
Daniel Pemberton
Published by :
Universal Music Publishing
Master Owner :
Warner Brothers Records

Need a credit fix? Contact the Creativity Editors