Apple has tightened up its privacy credentials by removing apps from its App Store which share location data with third parties without having obtained the consent of app users – in violation of its terms of service.
Deletions follow a ‘re-evaluation’ of previously sanctioned content to confirm compliance with App Store guidelines but may be resubmitted for sale subject to full compliance with tightened data sharing and use standards.
Apple is now operating a blanket ban on any app which makes use of or transmits someone’s personal data without having first obtained their express content. Developers must also inform users about how they wish to store and make use of such data.
This stance dovetails with the introduction of General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in Europe later this month, prompting Apple to pen a site allowing users to download all their personal data and delete their account at a stroke.
Apple’s pre-emptive move contrasts with Facebook which is still grappling to contain the fallout emanating from the Cambridge Analytica data scandal which saw user data shared with third-parties without their consent.