Google is adopting a major feature from iOS, implementing its own version of app privacy labels.
Apple introduced privacy labels late last year, requiring developers to disclose what information they collect and link to a user. The feature has shed a spotlight on the data practices of popular apps, with Facebook and Google drawing sharp criticism for the amount of data collected.
Google appears to be following Apple’s lead, informing developers it is rolling out a safety section in the Google Play Store, designed to help consumers understand an app’s data and security practices. The information presented includes an app’s security features, such as encryption; whether an app follows Google’s Families policy; whether data collection is required or optional; if the app’s safety section has been verified by an independent third-party; and whether the app allows users to request data deletion upon removal.
Google makes it clear its own apps will be subject to the new safety section, along with third-party apps.
We’re committed to ensuring that developers have plenty of time to prepare. This summer, we’ll share the new policy requirements and resources, including detailed guidance on app privacy policies. Starting Q2 2022, new app submissions and app updates must include this information.
Google’s announcement is good news for Android users, and should be a significant step forward in protecting their data and privacy.