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Apps For Kids Are Less Likely To Have Privacy Policy In The Apple App Store

Nov 8, 2021 9:47:44 AM

3 things to know:

  • Over 1 million apps in the Apple App Store in H1 2021 purported to be suited for audiences that include children aged 12 and under.
  • Apps for children in the Apple App Store were less likely to have a detectable Privacy Policy.
  • 91% of apps in the Apple App Store did not have detectable Terms of Service.

According to Pixalate’s analysis, 90% of apps in the Apple App Store in H1 2021 purported to be suited for audiences that include children aged 12 and under. However, often these apps offered less comprehensive privacy protection than apps suited for older audiences.

One of the best indicators for privacy protection is a detectable Privacy Policy. Per Pixalate’s measurements, 84% of apps for kids from the Apple App Store had a detectable Privacy Policy in H1 2021. On the other end, 87% of apps not for kids from the store had a detectable Privacy Policy.

Moreover, apps for kids from the Apple App Store were more likely to be privately registered, which leads to decreased transparency about the app's origin. 8% of apps for kids were privately registered, while 7% of apps not for kids were privately registered.

Further, 10% of all apps (both apps for kids and not for kids) in the Apple App Store were registered on a non-corporate email by a general email provider such as Gmail or Yahoo. Furthermore, 91% of both kinds of apps did not have a detectable Terms of Service, according to Pixalate’s analysis.

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Disclaimer

The content of this report reflects Pixalate’s opinions with respect to the factors that Pixalate believes can be useful to the digital media industry. Any data shared is grounded in Pixalate’s proprietary technology and analytics, which Pixalate is continuously evaluating and updating. Any references to outside sources should not be construed as endorsements. Pixalate’s opinions are just that, opinions, which means that they are neither facts nor guarantees. 

It is important to also note that the mere fact that an app lacks a Privacy Policy, lacks Terms of Service, is Privately Registered, and/or is registered under a Non-Corporate Email does not necessarily mean that such app, or its publisher, is actually exploiting data.

Instead, Pixalate is merely rendering an opinion that these data points may be suggestive of heightened risks to data subjects. Pixalate is sharing this data not to impugn the standing or reputation of any entity, person or app, but, instead, to render opinions and report trends pertaining to apps available for download via the official Google Play Store. 

Apple and the Apple logo are trademarks of Apple Inc. 

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