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Google to show Apple-like Privacy Labels for each app in Play Store starting next year

Google has announced that it will require all the developers to show what data their app collects among other things.

Google has announced that it will soon make it mandatory for developers to disclose what data their apps collect in order to be transparent with the users in regards to privacy. For this, the Google Play store will have a safety section that will help people understand the data an app collects or shares, if that data is secured, and additional details that impact privacy and security.

This functionality works similar to how Apple’s privacy labels work which shows the data collection stats for each app in the App store. “Developers agree that people should have transparency and control over their data. And they want simple ways to communicate app safety that are easy to understand and help users to make informed choices about how their data is handled”, says Google.

Privacy label timeline

In addition to the data an app collects or shares, Google will also introduce new elements to highlight whether:

  1. The app has security practices, like data encryption

  2. The app follows our Families policy

  3. The app needs this data to function or if users have choice in sharing it

  4. The app’s safety section is verified by an independent third-party

  5. The app enables users to request data deletion, if they decide to uninstall

Among other things, Google will require the developers to share:

  1. What type of data is collected and stored: Examples of potential options are approximate or precise location, contacts, personal information (e.g. name, email address), photos & videos, audio files, and storage files

  2. How the data is used: Examples of potential options are app functionality and personalization

Similar to app details like screenshots and descriptions, developers will be responsible for the information disclosed in their app’s section. Google Play will introduce a policy that requires developers to provide accurate information. If the developer violates and provides wrong data, Google will ask them to fix it. Failure in complying with the requirement, the app will be subject to policy enforcement.

Google says its own apps will be required to share this information and provide a privacy policy. Google will share the new policy requirements and resources, including detailed guidance on app privacy policies this summer. Starting Q2 2022, new app submissions and app updates must include this information, per the company.

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