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In the future, Google will only depend on developers to offer accurate information about how their apps gather data.

App developers must publish the information their applications acquire in order for the Google Play Store to implement a new data privacy section. This means Google will no longer provide a verified list of permissions it automatically gets from each app, allowing developers free flexibility over what they choose (or don’t want) for customers to know about their apps and services.

The business made it clear last year when it launched the new section on data protection that its system will depend on data given by developers. If you’re an app developer and haven’t filled out Google’s Data Privacy Form by July 20, you’ll need to do so by the end of the month, according to a help page on the company’s website.

As Google says, “Google Play analyzes applications across all policy standards; nevertheless, we cannot make judgments on behalf of the developers as to how they manage user data.” To complete the Data Security Form, you must have all of the information available to you. In the event Google discovers differences between the information provided by developers and the program itself, it will take “necessary action.”

Note that the Apple App Store has a similar policy in place for its privacy “nutrition” labels and also asks developers to provide “self-reported summaries” regarding their privacy policies in applications. Apple, like Google, relies on app developers to offer accurate information about the data they gather, and a recent analysis from The Washington Post showed that this information is sometimes “misleading or flat-out false.”

It seems that Google secretly replaced the automatic app permissions with the data privacy section, despite the fact that Google did not announce any intentions to do so.  If you look at a Google Play Store listing from 2021 and compare it to the one that is now accessible, you will see the same thing.

Although Google does keep app permissions in the Play store, this information is hidden from the user, Aurora, an open-source alternative to Google’s Play Store, shows permissions before you download an app, which he recommends.

If Google were to show both the app permissions and the data privacy area, it would make more sense. To ensure that the developer-reported permissions are in line with Google’s results, users might compare the two.

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