California Publishes Mobile App Privacy Best Practices

Friday Jan 11th 2013 by Developer.com Staff
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The state AG encourages mobile development firms to avoid collecting personally identifiable information.

California Attorney General Kamala Harris has put out a new report which outlines privacy best practices for the mobile development industry. Harris' office recently made headlines by going after app developers, including Delta Airlines, who fell afoul of California's digital privacy laws.

The complete report (pdf link) stretches to 27 pages and includes suggestions for app developers, app platform providers, mobile ad networks, operating system developers and mobile carriers. The recommendations for app developers include the following:

  • "Start with a data checklist to review the personally indentifiable data your app could collect and use it to make decisions on your privacy practices.
  • Avoid or limit collecting personally indentifiable data not needed for your app’s basic functionality.
  • Develop a privacy policy that is clear, accurate, and conspicuously accessible to users and potential users.
  • Use enhanced measures – 'Special Notices' or the combination of a short privacy statement and privacy controls – to draw users’ attention to data practices that may be unexpected and to enable them to make meaningful choices."

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