How new app guidelines could help protect your privacy

WASHINGTON (AP) - Industry groups and privacy advocates are nearing an agreement on new guidelines for mobile apps. The voluntary standard should make it easier for consumers to know what personal information is getting sucked from their smartphone or tablet and passed along to marketers.

The plan will likely provide a brief, easy-to-read snapshot of an app's privacy policies, similar to nutrition labels on food packages. The snapshot would give consumers the bottom line on what information the software collects, such as physical location, surfing habits and personal contacts, and how that data might be used or shared with other companies.

How widespread the labels become is up to industry. While the plan was on track to be endorsed by major trade associations, every app developer would get to decide if they want to comply.


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