Children's Online Privacy Protection law doesn't allow data tracking of kids below 13
Google once in a while, get a bit back on its security aspects against the millions of apps in the Google Play Store. Researchers and scientists have found that plenty of Android apps are secretly tracking the children's activity. With the help of the automated system for evaluating the apps’ privacy behavior, the team diagnosed 5,855 apps categorized for family and children's.
According to the report of the team out of all the diagnosed apps, almost 23 percent of the app is collecting the sensitive data comes from Android protection. More than 73 percent of these apps are transmitting the gathered data to various spots over the internet.
Accessing kid’s data without any parental consent breaches the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) of the USA. The law restricts the online services of apps from tracking the data of the minor below 13 years.
However, not all the apps were found to be precisely violating the laws as merely collecting the data isn't a law-breaking, according to COPPA. Along with this, the researchers potted 256 apps that were tracking the geolocation, 107 apps were collecting the email ids and almost ten apps sharing the user's phone numbers.
What is more alarming is that 1,100 apps were found to be sharing the personal identifying data with the third- parties for advertisement and other purposes banned by COPPA. Also, 2,281 apps were violating the Google terms of privacy by transmitting the Android Advertising Ids, that enabled us to control the ad tracking on our device.
The researchers also reported that almost 40 percent of the apps are performing data tracking actions without proper privacy measurement.
Google did not respond to the finding yet; the researchers spotted the weak point in implementing the COPPA provisions on the apps. It isn't like that all the developers were targeting the sensitive data, but most of them are not aware of the COPPA laws exactly.
The Android apps are flooding in the Google Play Store right now that makes it too complicated for Google to manually scrutinize everyone one of them. The automated tool is still there for ensuring the laws, but the app store operators need to check the apps by hand before restricting for not following the law.
She is a content marketer and has more than five years of experience in IoT, blockchain, Web, and mobile development. In all these years, she closely followed the app development, and now she writes about the existing and the upcoming mobile app technologies. Her essence is more like a ballet dancer.