Whatsapp blocked for 72 hours in Brazil. Image Credit: softpedia-static
Whatsapp blocked for 72 hours in Brazil. Image Credit: softpedia-static

A judge in Brazil has blocked access to messaging service WhatsApp for 72 hours, the latest suspension to hit the hugely popular application.

Judge Marcel Montalvao, issued the order because WhatsApp owner Facebook failed to hand over information requested in a criminal investigation.

Late last year in December, the instant messaging platform was temporarily shut down for similar reasons.

The service is widely used by over 100 million Brazilians, now face some of the highest charges in the world.

BBC reports that the order was due to come into place from 1400 local time (17:00 GMT) and applies to Brazil’s five main mobile operators.

WhatsApp said it was “disappointed” by the move, saying it had co-operated fully with the local court.

“This decision punishes more than 100 million Brazilians who rely on our service… in order to force us to turn over information we repeatedly said we don’t have,” a statement said.

In March the same judge ordered the arrest of a Facebook executive based in Brazil for failing to comply with an attempt to block WhatsApp.

He was released the next day.