Google Will Remove Apps in Play Store that Access Call Logs and SMSs

In last year’s announcement from Google, we learned that the apps that ask for users’ phone data like call logs or SMS would be removed. In the October update, Google said that all the apps in the Play Store that ask for such permissions would have to comply with the new policy and they had 90 days to do so.

The deadline is approaching, and Google has recently announced that all the apps that ask for SMS or call log permissions from users will be removed. On the Android Developers Blog, the Product Management Director of Google Play, Paul Bankhead, wrote:

Over the next few weeks, we will be removing apps from the Play Store that ask for SMS or Call Log permission and have not submitted a permission declaration form.

App developers had two choices to keep their apps in the store, according to the blog post – to either comply with these rules and do it in the 90-day window which is almost finished or ask Google for an extension until 9 March.

Why It’s Vital For Developers to Understand and Protect User Data?

Bankhead added that the new policy will make sure that the apps that do ask for such permissions will only do it because that is their primary use and that users must understand why they provide the data:

Our new policy is designed to ensure that apps asking for these permissions need full and ongoing access to the sensitive data in order to accomplish the app’s primary use case, and that users will understand why this data would be required for the app to function.

The report concludes by mentioning that all developers must strive for user data protection since it is vital to their apps and that this is how the Android ecosystem is being kept healthy.

Meanwhile, Google has begun an early ‘spring-cleaning’ by removing malicious apps in the Play Store.

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Jeff Wilkinson

About the Author: Jeff Wilkinson

Jeff Wilkinson  is a Senior Politics Reporter at Debate Report covering provincial and national politics, . Before joining  Debate Report, Jeff worked on several provincial campaigns including Jack Layton. Jeff has worked as a freelance journalist in Toronto, having been published by over 20 outlets including CBC, the Center for Media and VICE.com.

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