Comparison of Google Play Store and Apple App Store privacy labels

Comparison of Google Play Store and Apple App Store privacy labels

Privacy labels ensure that before you download an app from the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store, you know without a doubt whether or not your data is collected, what type of data is collected, how your collected data is processed, and whether it is shared with third parties. afraid. parties.

But how do app privacy labels compare in the Google Play Store and the App Store? Is it better to implement one of the platforms and can you trust them? Let’s see.

What is the privacy label in the Google Play Store or Apple App Store?

A privacy label is an information section available in the Play Store or App Store that details whether an app collects data, the different types of data it collects, how it handles user data, and the purpose of data collection.

The key theme behind app privacy labels is to make apps’ data collection practices transparent to you before you hit the download button. Prior to their introduction, developers were only required to disclose their data management practices in privacy policies within their websites or apps. However, these privacy policies are often lengthy and difficult to follow, making them difficult to understand.

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Google and Apple have added privacy labels to address this issue by clearly and concisely describing their apps’ data collection practices.

Google Play Store vs. Apple App Store privacy labels

Apple App Store Privacy Labels
Image source: Apple

Privacy labels are one way Google and Apple provide transparency about the data collection by apps in the app stores. However, both companies take slightly different approaches to achieve the same goal.

What information do they require?

In the Google Play Store, app privacy labels detail four key details: whether an app shares data with third parties, whether an app collects data (and the types of data collected if so), and whether the app follows data security best practices . , and whether you can request the deletion of your data.

You can view all this information at a glance Data security partly on the data sheet of an application. Here, developers can also list whether the data collected is mandatory (depending on whether the app needs the data to function) or optional.

In the Apple App Store, privacy labels are divided into three categories: data used to track you, data related to you, and data not related to you. You can view these categories on an application’s data sheet under Data protection of applications.

Like Google, understanding Apple’s App Store privacy labels takes an extra step of tapping See details to view comprehensive information such as the exact data collected and the purpose of data collection.

However, Apple’s privacy labels lack other information available in the Play Store, such as whether an app follows best security practices in handling your data, whether you can request data deletion, and whether data collection is optional or mandatory .

Are the app’s privacy labels checked?

Subtle differences aside, the critical question is which platform’s privacy labels can be trusted. The short answer is none. Privacy labels on both platforms are self-reporting, and neither Google nor Apple verify that the reported information is accurate or misleading.

Like Google, Apple’s app privacy labels may not be accurate after all for a company that claims to be at the forefront of the fight for user privacy. That’s why you shouldn’t be surprised to see that an app that swears it won’t collect any data does the exact opposite.

Additionally, according to Google and Apple policies, a developer may choose not to list data as collected or shared in certain cases, even if it is collected and shared.

Don’t trust apps’ privacy labels

App privacy labels on Android and iOS provide an easy way to see your apps’ data collection practices. There are some small differences between Android and iOS, and Google’s privacy labels are more detailed.

However, neither Google nor Apple verify the data reported by developers, which makes privacy labels less valuable. So before you download an app because of its fancy privacy label that swears it won’t collect your data, check its privacy policy first.

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