Apple Was Allowing App Developers to Use Your Personal Data Apple Was Allowing App Developers to Use Your Personal Data – NTK Network

Apple Was Allowing App Developers to Use Your Personal Data

The company quietly closed a loophole last week to stop the practice, but not before Cook grandstanded on the privacy issue for months.

By NTK Staff | 06.13.2018 @11:00am
Apple Was Allowing App Developers to Use Your Personal Data

Apple CEO Tim Cook took the flamethrower to Facebook over a user data controversy earlier this year. When asked what he would do if Apple were in Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s shoes, Cook responded, “I wouldn’t be in that situation.” The Washington Post described it as Cook “implicitly savaging” Facebook.

But a new report from Bloomberg reveals that Apple does, in fact, allow developers to take information from users’ iPhone contacts. Or rather, they did, until sometime last week when the tech giant quietly closed a loophole in its App Store rules to prevent developers from storing and sharing data without users’ consent.

The move cracks down on a practice that’s been employed for years. Developers ask users for access to their phone contacts, then use it for marketing and sometimes share or sell the information — without permission from the other people listed on those digital address books. On both Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android, the world’s largest smartphone operating systems, the tactic is sometimes used to juice growth and make money.

This is essentially the same practice that got Facebook in hot water a few months back. Yet for some reason, Apple’s privacy infringement isn’t garnering the headlines that Facebook has received. And that’s in spite of the fact that Cook repeatedly rode a high horse over the privacy issue.

During a commencement address at Duke University, Cook told graduates that Apple is “respectful” of users’ personal information.

Cook told new graduates: “We reject the excuse that getting the most out of technology means trading away your right to privacy. So we choose a different path: collecting as little of your data as possible. Being thoughtful and respectful when it’s in our care. Because we know it belongs to you.”

Time will tell if Apple finds itself in the hot seat like Facebook did, but based on the evidence of Apple’s latest move and Cook’s grandstanding on the issue, a public thrashing might not be far off.

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