Google is replacing the Android app’s permissions list with the new data security feature in the Play Store
For example, we opened the TikTok app and under the Data Security heading, it says, “Security starts with understanding how developers collect and share your data. Privacy and security practices may vary by usage, region, and age. The developer provided this information and may update it over time.” TikTok’s data security list states that the app does not share data with third parties, encrypts data in transit, and allows you to request data deletion.
The privacy entry in the Google Play Store for TikTok
On the other hand, the data security list indicates that the app collects location, personal information and 9 other different types of data. If this bothers you, you can choose not to install TikTok or uninstall it if you’ve already added the app to your phone.
Android users need to trust both app developers and Google
Here is how Google Android app developers explains the new privacy listing: “You are solely responsible for providing complete and accurate information in your app’s store listing on Google Play. Google Play reviews apps for all policy requirements; however, we cannot make any statements on behalf of the developers about how they handle user data. Only you have all the information required to fill out the data security form. If Google finds a discrepancy between your app behavior and your statement, we may take appropriate action, including enforcement action.”
The question then is not only whether you can trust an app’s developer to share all personal and private data that an app collects with Google, but also whether you believe that Google can properly monitor the new data security list . Considering we’re always writing about some form of Android malware that somehow made it through Google’s scanning, that’s a fair question.
The bottom line is that whether you install Android or iOS apps, you have a way of seeing how much of your personal information is being exposed. Can we trust these lists as they come from the app developers themselves? With Google replacing app permissions with data security entries, iOS and Android users have no alternative.
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