New iOS privacy updates from Apple will show how Apps track you and your activity

Article Edited by | Jhon N |


At its annual Worldwide Developers Conference Monday, Apple announced new privacy features for its devices. These updates include more controls on sharing location data, and indicators when your microphone or camera is used by an app.

The updates mean you can limit how much location information apps share - only allowing approximate data instead of your precise whereabouts. Apple also introduced recording indicators on your status bar via an orange dot that will tell you when your camera or microphone is turned on. "All of our product work is grounded in a set of principles of privacy," said Craig Federighi, Apple 's senior software engineering vice president.

Apple has also introduced app permission labels to tell people how much data an app requests before they download it. The feature will show these labels to people in two categories, "Data Linked To You" and "Data Used to Track You."

"You have nutrition labels for food," said Erik Neuenschwander, the privacy manager for Apple's users. "So we thought that having something similar for apps would be great. We 're going to require each developer to report their practices on their own."

The privacy updates also extend through the URL bar to Apple's Safari browser, with a new "Privacy Report" button. Soon you will be able to see all the third-party trackers on a website by one click, and block them from following you on the Internet. Also, Safari will add protections against browser extensions - which can access more information than what you originally downloaded for.

The new Safari features allow individuals to control how many access extensions they have - from how long the extensions are active to which websites the extensions can be used for.

Apple has been pushing to lead the data privacy pack of tech giants as people are becoming increasingly concerned about how much information companies like Facebook and Google are collecting on them. Apple put up a large billboard focused on privacy at the CES tech show in 2019, and the company's privacy chief spoke on a CES panel in 2020 about how Apple is protecting customer information.

WWDC is Apple 's annual software-update conference for its device line. The company has backed up its privacy talk by announcing features at previous WWDCs such as Sign In With Apple, which generates random email addresses to log in to apps instead of tying your actual identity to services. Federighi said Monday this feature has been used by up to 200 million people since it was announced last year.

Apple has also clamped on location tracking via iOS and blocking browser trackers from third parties.