News Worms
News Worms


Google is now cracking down apps that track data without permission

Google is now cracking down apps that track data without permission

Google announced plans to crack down on Android applications that fail to warn users when they are collecting personal data.

Once the user has installed the app on their Android device, the app will need to prompt a privacy policy that explicitly mentions what kind of data it procures from the user. To be able to transmit that data, the user must be shown a prominent disclosure and give affirmative consent.

Google will now require apps to show a privacy policy on the device when the software is handling personal data such as phone number or email address.

The crackdown is a new effort to combat malicious and harmful Android apps and will apply to software distributed through the Play Store as well as third-party Android app markets. The user must provide consent for all of these. Any app that collects personal data will be subject to the new rules. Also, if these apps collect personal data unrelated to the functionality of the app - the developers must highlight this prior to collection and transmission, so the user knows how the data will be used. All that users will see is a warning, and one that doesn't quite stop them from using the app in the first place.

New and existing applications will have 60 days to conform to these new rules, or developers risk their app displaying the new message asking for consent.

The company has updated its Unwanted Software Policy page and the guidance page on how app developers should handle user data.

Popular apps such as Uber, Spotify, and Tinder use Google's Crashlytics crash reporting feature to access insights into people's behaviour. The warnings should help users to know that there might be possible dangers ahead. In case apps don't follow it, Google Play Protect will show a warning when such app tries to collect your personal data without notifying you.

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