Apple launches new app privacy labels

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Apple on Monday said it is launching new privacy labels that will require all apps sold on Apple’s stores to disclose information about the data it tracks from users. 

The labels were first announced in June at the Worldwide Developers Conference, along with a broader set of changes Apple said aim to increase transparency regarding data collection. 

Apple started requiring developers to submit new privacy information to the App Store last week in order to update their apps. 

With the new labels, app product pages will show users the type of data an app may collect, whether the app will use that data to track a user, and whether it will be linked to the user. The data types will be collected in three categories, “data used to track you,” “data linked to you,” and “data not linked to you,” according to Apple. 

Data tracking refers to user data collected from an app with user or device data collected from other companies’ apps, websites or offline properties for targeted advertising measurement purposes. Tracking can also refer to sharing user or device date with data brokers, according to Apple. 

The data “linked to you” refers to any personal data that is tied to a user’s identity through a user’s account on the app, device or other details, according to Apple. 

The privacy labels Apple launched Monday are not the last privacy features the company plans to release. Apple in June also announced plans for a feature that would require developers to ask users for permission to track them across platforms before accessing data about them. 

The ad-tracking feature was intended to be included as part of an iOS 14 update for users in mid-September. But Apple later said it would delay the feature until early next year to give developers time to update their systems and data practices. 

Apple’s announced ad-tracking feature has been criticized by Facebook, which said the feature could lead to more than a 50 percent drop in Audience Network publisher revenue. Facebook has also criticized Apple of being motivated by profit and not privacy regarding the new privacy rules. 

Tags ad tracking Apple Facebook

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