Wednesday, July 23rd13.0°C
22714
22156

Don't go there, 'privacy-friendly' apps

Several Canadian privacy watchdogs have created a set of guidelines to help mobile developers create "privacy-friendly" smartphone apps.

And they warn that failing to be transparent about any information collected could see developers running afoul of both the law and their potential customers.

Federal privacy commissioner Jennifer Stoddart joined her counterparts in British Columbia and Alberta in releasing a 12-page document that explains how Canada's privacy laws apply to mobile app developers, whether they're based in this country or farther afield.

Stoddart says it's been a challenge to ensure everyone in the growing mobile app industry knows that the rules apply to them.

"We were concerned that apps often seem to have nothing to do with Canadian law on the use of personal information," Stoddart says in an interview.

"Sometimes they're not aware. Sometimes I get the impression they don't care and they're not going out of their way to find out. And sometimes it's a catch-me-if-you-can attitude."

Stoddart says any developer that sells an app to Canadians must comply with the same privacy legislation as any other business.

That, according to the guide, means developers are responsible for ensuring any information they collect from users is relevant to their product and is securely stored. Users must be fully informed and must consent to the type of information that will be collected and what will be done with it.

The guide offers tips to ensure developers are thinking about privacy from the planning stages of an app.

"Because of the hugely networked online world, bad news travels fast, and there's always the privacy-conscious people out there who can spread the word if they don't think (an app) is respectful of their privacy," says Stoddart.

"In spite of urban myths to the contrary, they don't want to give away demographic information or where their location is to get apps for free."

Federal and provincial privacy commissioners have the power to enforce privacy laws. They can launch investigations and order companies to shape up. If they don't comply, the commissioners can then ask the courts to step in.

The Canadian Press


Read more Business News

22439


Recent Trending




Today's Market
S&P TSX15315.13+65.14
S&P CDNX1010.884.40
DJIA17113.5461.81
Nasdaq4456.016+31.312
S&P 5001983.53+9.90
CDN Dollar0.9327+0.0015
Gold1313.40+4.2001
Oil104.30-0.29
Lumber332.50+6.20
Natural Gas3.781+0.009

 
Okanagan Companies
Pacific Safety0.200.00
Knighthawk0.01-0.005
QHR Technologies Inc1.19+0.04
Cantex0.06+0.005
Anavex Life Sciences0.33-0.018
Metalex Ventures0.07+0.005
Russel Metals35.60+0.61
Copper Mountain Mining2.83+0.14
Colorado Resources0.215+0.015
ReliaBrand Inc0.10+0.019
Sunrise Resources Ltd0.025-0.005
Mission Ready Services0.19+0.01

 



22557

FEATURED Property
2021795Mobile Home for sale
$73,900
more details
image2image2image2
Click here to feature your property
Please wait... loading


Labour shortage in BC

The mainstream media are finally waking up to something unusual in British Columbia – a labour shortage. If the experience of Alberta is a guide to our own future, the highly skilled labour will...


Learn to delegate effectively

Photo: ContributedI have the pleasure of witnessing people delegate tasks quite often. Sometimes with tremendous success and sometimes with disastrous consequences. I have chaired a lot of committees...


Euro debt woes re-emerge

Big Picture Euro debt woes re-emerge Europe’s debt woes jumped back into the headlines this week trumping other economic, geopolitical and corporate developments. Word that one of Portugal&rsquo...

_








Member of BC Press Council


22685