Google Play introduces mandatory app privacy labels in April 2022

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Apple added an extensive ‘Privacy’ section to the app store in iOS 14. The new policies require app developers to list the data they collect and how they use it. Google, which has been in Apple’s privacy crosshairs and even prompted the addition of these labels, delayed updates for months to avoid complying with the policy.

Now, the search engine giant is copying the same privacy policies for its Google Play store.

The company posted a demo of its Data privacy and security. It contains everything you might see if you opened Apple’s App Store.

What does it look like?

You will find information on what kind of data the apps collect and whether or not they share the data with third parties. There is also information regarding how the data is stored.

Developers can also explain what the data is used for and if data collection is required to make the app work. The section also shows whether or not the data collected is encrypted and if the users can delete data associated with their identity if they wish to do so.

The app will also have to detail if it follows Google’s Families policy (consisting of COPPA guidance.)

Going all out

Google Play’s privacy section will be mandatory for all developers, beginning April 2022, and will start transitioning from October. Google has told developers that they can start populating information in the Google Play console for review.

The company added that in April, all apps will need to supply a privacy policy, even if they do not collect any data. Apps that do not have an approved privacy section by then will have their app updates rejected or their apps removed from the store.

The responsibility to provide accurate and complete information lies with the developer. The truth is, all this runs on an honor system, where developers have already been caught faking privacy labels.