In December 2020, Apple began requiring app developers to create a private label that lists all the data that their app gathers. Taking this move a step ahead, Apple has launched a searchable database of its own app’s private labels. Apple’s privacy website now has a new ‘Labels’ section, which details how every in-house Apple application gathers user data. “Our privacy labels are designed to help you understand how apps handle your data, including apps we develop at Apple,” reads the web page with the privacy label database.
Privacy labels are available for all applications across iOS, macOS, watchOS, tvOS, and iPadOS. Apple has also put in labels for developer tools like Xcode and the App Store itself. For instance, the App Store collects your location data, identifiers, purchase details, search history, etc., the Clock app collects identifiers that are not linked to you. Meanwhile, the Messages app collects your contact info, search history, and other identifiers linked to who you are.The privacy label for Apple apps isn’t exactly new. Earlier, the privacy labels for all these apps very available on their individual support pages, and now they are all curated together in one place.
With this, Apple emphasizes that the privacy label of none of its apps would have “Data Used to Track You.” Other developers are allowed to “track users” if they obtain permission from the user. This will be mandatory under the App Tracking Transparency framework that will be enforced with iOS 14.5.