Apple launches its privacy-label database

The labels reveal what type of data Apple apps collect when you use them

The Apple logo on the front of a glass store in Ireland

Apple has announced a searchable privacy-label database, bringing privacy labels for iOS, iPadOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS apps together in one place.

Starting late last year, Apple required developers to detail app privacy information on the App store. The details, which Apple calls “privacy nutrition labels,” better informed users about what data apps collect and if that data is linked to them or used for tracking. 

"Our privacy labels are designed to help you understand how apps handle your data, including apps we develop," said Apple.

The database, which you can find under the “Labels” section in Apple’s privacy webpage, offers details on Apple apps across iOS, iPadOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS. For convenience, Apple arranges the apps alphabetically, and users can learn what data apps are gathering and if that data is linked to their identity.

For example, Apple Maps collects your location, search history, and usage data, but that data isn't linked to your identity. The App Store collects your contact and purchase info, search history, and other identifiers related to your identity. Airport Utility, on the other hand, collects no data at all.

According to Apple’s privacy policy, “collected data may depend on the features you use, whether you only use a paid version of an app, or whether you’re a child.” App developers may choose not to list data in the App Privacy section if the data collected from users is “covered by a privacy law under relevant financial services or data protection laws or regulations.” 

The update is a welcome addition for users looking to view and manage their privacy settings in one place. 

For more information about Apple’s data-collection policies, head to Apple’s developer support page.

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