Apple Offers Developers Clarification on Some App Privacy Data Reporting Requirements

Apple today informed developers that it has introduced additional guidance for App Store privacy labels, a feature that Apple has been requiring for all apps since December.

app store privacy labels iphone 12
Apple says that rules surrounding data types like email, text messages, and gameplay content have been expanded to make it easier for developers to understand and comply with requirements.

Additional details have been published on completing your ‌App Store‌ privacy labels, including more information about data types, such as email or text messages, and gameplay content. You'll also find more information about data collected in web views and data that may be entered by users within documents or other file types.

On its developer website, Apple has a detailed list of the kind of information that developers must provide for their apps, and explanations of the types of data collection that must be disclosed.

Data collection for tracking purposes, third-party advertising, marketing, and other reasons must be disclosed to users, and developers are required to self-report using Apple's guidelines. As of December, Apple has been requiring ‌App Store‌ developers to provide App Privacy label information to submit new apps and app updates to the ‌App Store‌.

Apple does not check the data that each app submits, and in January, The Washington Post found more than a dozen apps providing inaccurate or misleading data in their privacy labels.

Apple said in response that it is subjecting developers to routine and ongoing audits of information provided. The company works with developers to correct inaccuracies and has said that apps that fail to disclose accurate privacy information may have future updates rejected or could be removed from the ‌App Store‌ entirely.

Top Rated Comments

icanhazmac Avatar
17 weeks ago

Apple said in response that it is subjecting developers to routine and ongoing audits of information provided. The company works with developers to correct inaccuracies and has said that apps that fail to disclose accurate privacy information may have future updates rejected or could be removed from the App Store entirely.
Excellent, thank you Apple! Without consequences devs will just lie/omit.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
aesc80 Avatar
17 weeks ago

If Apple does not check the data that each app submits, what is to stop developers from lying about their privacy label sans Apple doing a random audit? I may be missing something here but, that lack of follow-up with each app defeats the purpose of moving towards more transparency and privacy, in my opinion.
It's sort of random, but normally there is a good amount of checking that's done. That being said, it's difficult to check every submission that goes through Apple Connect for compliance. It's definitely one job I'm glad I'm not doing (but also tip my hat to those at Apple that do).
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MacBH928 Avatar
17 weeks ago
The privacy labels is a joke. you can't understand it. Its so vague. For example the Gmail app says:

Purchases: What purchases, Its an email app not a store front.
Identifiers: Like what? My IP address or my DNA?
Other Data: Yes, ok I got it.
Search History: What search history? From the Safari browser? Chrome? My computer? TV?

add to that you can never know whats going on in a closed source program.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Apple_Robert Avatar
17 weeks ago
If Apple does not check the data that each app submits, what is to stop developers from lying about their privacy label sans Apple doing a random audit? I may be missing something here but, that lack of follow-up with each app defeats the purpose of moving towards more transparency and privacy, in my opinion.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Daveoc64 Avatar
17 weeks ago

If Apple does not check the data that each app submits, what is to stop developers from lying about their privacy label sans Apple doing a random audit? I may be missing something here but, that lack of follow-up with each app defeats the purpose of moving towards more transparency and privacy, in my opinion.
Apple can't check what happens to the data - it's simply not possible.

As the article says, the privacy label is intended to tell users when their data is used for purposes like marketing and ads. The privacy label system has different sections to cover the different ways in which data can be collected and used.

If an app only uses your email address to send you password reset emails and nothing else, that can be declared in one place on the privacy label. If the app uses email addresses to track you for advertising purposes, that goes in a different place. If the app only uses email addresses in exceptional circumstances (e.g. when filling out an optional feedback form), the app may not need to declare that it collects email addresses at all.

Apple can't verify what happens to the data once it goes to the app developer's servers. If they say it's just for logging in, Apple has to trust that, unless proven otherwise.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Theyayarealivin Avatar
17 weeks ago
Release iOS 14.5 already please ?
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

YouTube Picture in Picture Feature

YouTube Says iOS Picture-in-Picture Coming to All US Users

Friday June 18, 2021 9:41 am PDT by
After a long wait, YouTube for iOS is officially gaining picture-in-picture support, allowing all users, non-premium and premium subscribers, to close the YouTube app and continue watching their video in a small pop-up window. In a statement to MacRumors, YouTube says that picture-in-picture is currently rolling out to all premium subscribers on iOS and that a larger rollout to all US iOS...
Top Stories 63 Feature

Top Stories: Beats Studio Buds Announced, Apple Watch Series 7 Rumors, and More

Saturday June 19, 2021 6:00 am PDT by
The Apple news cycle started to move beyond WWDC this week, but that doesn't mean there still wasn't a lot to talk about, led by the official debut of the much-leaked Beats Studio Buds that might give us a hint of what to expect for the second-generation AirPods Pro. With no hardware announcements at WWDC, we also took a look at when we might finally see the long-rumored redesigned MacBook...
ios wifi settings

iOS Bug Causes Specific Network Name to Disable Wi-Fi on iPhones

Sunday June 20, 2021 4:15 am PDT by
A wireless network naming bug has been discovered in iOS that effectively disables an iPhone's ability to connect to Wi-Fi. Security researcher Carl Schou found that after joining a Wi-Fi network with the name "%p%s%s%s%s%n" his iPhone's Wi-Fi functionality was left "permanently disabled." Changing a hotspot's SSID did nothing to correct the problem, with even a reboot failing to make a...
maxresdefault

Video: 20 Annoyances Apple Fixed in iOS 15 and macOS Monterey

Friday June 18, 2021 11:36 am PDT by
With iOS 15 and macOS Monterey, Apple is adding several quality of life improvements, which are designed to address some of the complaints that people have had with these operating systems for years now. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. In our latest YouTube video, we're highlighting some of our favorite "fix" features that address long-running problems in iOS and...
16 inch macbook pro m2 render

When Can We Expect the Redesigned MacBook Pros Now?

Wednesday June 16, 2021 7:11 am PDT by
With no sign of redesigned MacBook Pro models at this year's WWDC, when can customers expect the much-anticipated new models to launch? A number of reports, including investor notes from Morgan Stanley and Wedbush analysts, claimed that new MacBook Pro models would be coming during this year's WWDC. This did not happen, much to the disappointment of MacBook Pro fans, who have been...
space gray magic accessories trio

Apple Stops Selling Magic Accessories in Space Gray

Friday June 18, 2021 9:16 am PDT by
Apple this week stopped selling its Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad, Magic Mouse 2, and Magic Trackpad 2 accessories for the Mac in a Space Gray color, around three months after discontinuing the iMac Pro, which also came in Space Gray. Last month, Apple listed the Space Gray accessories as available while supplies last, and the company has now removed the product pages from its website...
m1 v intel thumb

Intel Processor Market Share May Fall to New Low Next Year Due to Apple Silicon

Friday June 18, 2021 2:06 am PDT by
Intel may see its market share fall to a new low next year, in large part thanks to Apple's decision to move away from using Intel processors in its Mac computers and instead use Apple silicon. Apple announced last year that it would embark on a two-year-long journey to transition all of its Mac computers, both desktops, and laptops, to use its own in-house processors. Apple is expected to...
3nm apple silicon feature

Apple Supplier TSMC Readies 3nm Chip Production for Second Half of 2022

Friday June 18, 2021 6:59 am PDT by
Apple supplier TSMC is preparing to produce 3nm chips in the second half of 2022, and in the coming months, the supplier will begin production of 4nm chips, according to a new report from DigiTimes. Apple had previously booked the initial capacity of TSMC's 4nm chip production for future Macs and more recently ordered TSMC to begin production of the A15 chip for the upcoming iPhone 13,...
2021 back t0 school

Apple Launches 2021 Back to School Promotion: Free AirPods With Eligible Mac or iPad Purchase

Thursday June 17, 2021 4:56 am PDT by
Apple today launched its seasonal back-to-school sale for the upcoming school year in the United States and Canada, offering students free AirPods alongside purchases of select Macs and iPad models. Similar to last year's promotion, this year's offer includes free AirPods alongside the purchase of a MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, the new 24-inch iMac, the Mac Pro, Mac mini, and the new M1-powered ...
applecare lower prices

Apple Lowers Prices of AppleCare+ Plans for M1 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro

Thursday June 17, 2021 7:33 am PDT by
Apple today lowered the prices of AppleCare+ plans for MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Pro models equipped with the M1 chip. Coverage offered by the plans, as well as accidental damage fees, appear to remain unchanged. In the United States, AppleCare+ for the MacBook Air now costs $199, down from $249. The new price applies to both M1 and Intel-based MacBook Air models, although Apple no...