Apple like Google also Send Users’ Data to Advertisers, Says a Report

Apple says that all your activities on the iPhone remain on iPhone only. Proving their claim wrong, The Washington Post reported that several famous apps send users’ data to tracking companies.

Geoffrey Fowler of TWP collaborated with Disconnect, a private firm for research. They discovered that apps like Microsoft OneDrive, Nike, Spotify, Intuit’s Mint, and IBM’s The Weather Channel, abuse ‘Background App Refresh’ feature of iPhone and share the personal data of users like contact number, IP addresses and email IDs to marketing and advertising agencies for creating targeted ads.

Getting users data by tracking and using it to develop a product or service is a common practice these days, but it is now happening at an alarming rate. According to Fowler’s research, in a week around 5400 apps smuggled the data.

In a month, trackers got hold of almost 1.5 GB data, disclosed Disconnect.

A business directory service app, Yelp sends data after every 5 minutes through trackers, while Citizen (an app that sends "instant crime and safety alerts"), violates its own privacy rules by sending personal identifiers.

Safari, in Apple, has an advanced option to avoid tracking. “Limit Ad Tracking” is a feature in the iPhone that allows to stop tracking and need to be turned on manually.

Collecting data from Apple is not easy but if any app manages to get it, it is almost impossible to know how that is used by the app and for how long will they use it.

Fowler said that to keep it transparent the way data is used, Apple should use controls in its operating system, and labels should be used when trackers are active in the background of a device.

Popular iOS apps use 'background app refresh' feature to send users location and IP address to third-parties

Read next: Apple dismisses Google CEO's criticism over privacy being a luxury item

1 comment:

  1. I learned that Apple is sending more than 5MB data to Google everyday as Google is default search engine in iOS, it’s creepy! See https://e.foundation/privacy-facts/ . This is not what privacy conscious people want, and not what i want! We need a more ethical mobile OS like what the eFoundation offers. I’ve been testing the beta version of /e/ (e.foundation) on my Samsung Galaxy S9 and it works great. Go and check it out on their website: https://e.foundation

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