July 18, 2012
There are heated debates about the topic of mobile app privacy highlighting that the major severe issue is that of information being taken by third parties without permission from the party who collects and stores it, let alone the fact that some apps were transferring users’ personal data straight to alien companies without any notice to or consent from users.
Such personal data included and wasn’t limited to user’s age, gender, profession.
There was mandatory by state of California law to have privacy policies agreements for online businesses but they are also required for the mobile web, it refers to apps that collect personal information.
Apple and Google agreed, Amazon, HP, Microsoft and Research in Motion, as well. So far, apps didn’t have privacy policies, a matter that stirred excitement about this topic.
Still, there are no restrictions regarding what kind of personal information app makers may gather. But they have to state clear and give details about their personal information practice, how they gather, use and disclose it.
It is also important that their privacy policies are handy to reach by users – they may be posted within the app itself or linked to it.
So, from now on, users of mobile apps have more control on their personal information and it’s up to them whom they share it, how much and how will it be used, because app makers have to be compliant with California Online Privacy Protection Act.
This Act commits platforms to provide material and support for developers to learn about their obligations addressing the matter of respecting consumers’ privacy and to let them know what private data they collect, to what purposes will they use and whom they disclose it.
App owners have the responsibility to ensure compliance with privacy legislation by offering users tools to report law-unsuitable apps and through committing organizations to implement mechanisms to reply to such reports.