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Lawmaker, Regulator Concerned About Apps

MOBILE PRIVACY—U.S. & EU

March 5, 2012

Following news that mobile apps on the Apple and Google mobile systems may access users' address books and photos, U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) is urging the Federal Trade Commission to investigate, The Economic Times reports. "These uses go well beyond what a reasonable user understands himself to be consenting to when he allows an app to access data on the phone for purposes of the app's functionality," writes Schumer. He questions whether the companies' terms of service are being breached and notes, "smartphone makers should be required to put in place safety measures to ensure third party applications are not able to violate a user's personal privacy..." Meanwhile, in light of similar findings in the UK, EU Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding said, "This really concerns me, and this is against the law because nobody has the right to get your personal data without you agreeing to this."
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