More Apps Caught Sending Highly Personal Information to Facebook

Sam Schechner, reporting for The Wall Street Journal:

In the Journal’s testing, Instant Heart Rate: HR Monitor, the most popular heart-rate app on Apple’s iOS, made by California-based Azumio Inc., sent a user’s heart rate to Facebook immediately after it was recorded.

Flo Health Inc.’s Flo Period & Ovulation Tracker, which claims 25 million active users, told Facebook when a user was having her period or informed the app of an intention to get pregnant, the tests showed.

Real-estate app, owned by Move Inc., a subsidiary of Wall Street Journal parent News Corp , sent the social network the location and price of listings that a user viewed, noting which ones were marked as favorites, the tests showed.

None of those apps provided users any apparent way to stop that information from being sent to Facebook.

Just incredible. The appetite for analytics is so pervasive and perverse it’s led the entire industry to lose its mind.

I don’t know what the answer is, but I think Apple needs to institute stringent disclosure requirements on apps that share data with third parties. Apple’s not directly involved, but they promote the App Store as a resource users can trust.

Friday, 22 February 2019