Tuesday, 12 December, 2017

Google starts cracking down on Android apps handling personal data

Google Files Go App Google starts cracking down on Android apps handling personal data
Sherri Watson | 04 December, 2017, 18:07

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. This includes putting the complete text of the privacy policy in the app itself.

These changes will begin 60 days from December 1st, which should be January 30th, 2018. All that users will see is a warning, and one that doesn't quite stop them from using the app in the first place.

According to the new policy, any apps handling users' personal information like email addresses or phone numbers, or device data will have to prompt users before doing so.

These new moves are part of Google's Unwanted Software Policy, and the main goal of them is to provide users with warnings on apps that are trying to collect any of their data.

Save up to 30% of mobile data through controlling data usage on an app-by-app. For instance, the app will not be allowed to send crash reports and analytics reports without the consent of the owner.

"These requirements apply to apps in Google Play and non-Play app markets".

The means of users giving their consent to have data taken must also be presented in a clear and unambiguous way, such as tapping to accept or tick a check-box.

Google has been cracking down on certain ads within apps for a long time.

Google notes that two common violations are when an app doesn't treat a user's installed apps as personal or sensitive user data and when an app doesn't treat the user's phone or contact book as personal data.

Websites owners that attract a Safe Browsing warning will need to follow the usual processes in the Search Console if they want to resolve the warnings. App developers caught by the new Safe Browsing warnings can request an app review on the App Verifications and Appeals support page.