Top Smartphone Makers Clamp Down on Privacy

News   •   Apr 06, 2012 13:00 BST

RIM, HP, Microsoft, Amazon, Apple and Google have all agreed to sign a privacy policy to protect their customers from privacy issues when they download apps onto their smartphone. Previously, the smartphone users’ information would be sent to the app developer and could then be used for email, contact information and private data. This was completely unknown to the user that their data was being shared, and the six smartphone developer giants have combined to stop this from happening.

Millions of people’s information has been being shared for too long, and even though current privacy protection laws stating that this should not be the case, lots of information are being freely passed around. The reason for this is that mobile apps weren’t necessarily part of the privacy policy ruling and this has left a large loophole for spammers and advertisers to take advantage of. With apps being created and downloaded by the billion, the amount of people and companies that hold your information would be a huge shock.

It’s been reported that 65% of apps that are downloaded are free of any privacy policy disclosure and that has led to people’s information being shared. The innocence of just downloading an app or a game that you’re interested in has been having major repercussions. The Attorney General, Kamala D Harris said, “People who download mobile apps should not be forced into giving away their personal information, but sadly this has been true for too long. That’s all changed now”. App developers are no forced to tell their customers and those that download their software to state clearly if their personal information will be used or not and in what way. It’s been found that some simple apps that go viral have the ability to download all of the users’ contact list information, so it’s not just down to the smartphone user who gives their own information away, but their friends, colleagues and family’s information too!

With the app industry expected to grow to an astonishing 98 billion apps being downloaded in the next three years, with a stunning 35 billion already downloaded today, it’s a piece of legislation that is way overdue. The app market is worth $6.8bn at the moment and is expect to grow to around $25bn in the next four years. With this in mind, those unsavoury are trying to profit off the viral-appeal of apps and are cashing-in on people able to grab names, addresses, emails and phone numbers of millions of people in just a short space of time.

Now that the privacy policy agreement has been signed from the top six smartphone manufacturers, it will be much more difficult for app makers to be able to hide the fact that their app will access all the personal information that is held on smartphones. If you want to stay ahead of the game when it comes to privacy and security, it’s best to regularly upgrade your smartphone so you have the latest technology at your fingertips – check out the latest smartphones here on Mobile Phone Checker.