Apple to update privacy policy on iOS apps

Apple has promised to make some changes in its policy for iOS-based apps in the wake of what was discovered with with a particular app. Last week, the social networking app Path was found to be taking address books from iPhone users and storing that info on the company's servers without the permission or knowledge of the app's users.

Path's CEO Dave Morin later apologized and the company has now updated the iOS app to ask permission before accessing iPhone address books. Path has also deleted previously collected iPhone address books from its servers. Later it was revealed that other iOS apps did much the same thing. That includes the Twitter iPhone and iPad app which the LA Times web site reports keeps such info for 18 months.

Today Reuters reports that Apple will make a change in its policy, saying that it will now require that any iOS app that accesses a user's address book to ask permission beforehand. An Apple spokesperson said:

Apps that collect or transmit a user's contact data without their prior permission are in violation of our guidelines. We're working to make this even better for our customers, and as we have done with location services, any app wishing to access contact data will require explicit user approval in a future software release.

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