Google has revealed more details about the “Safety” section, which will soon be available on the Play Store. The latest post on the Android Developers blog shows previews of what will happen when the new safety and privacy policies will be implemented in the first quarter of 2022, which is next. The search giant has also announced new user data policies changes that will be applicable to all the apps.
“The new safety section will provide developers a simple way to showcase their app’s overall safety. Developers will be able to give users deeper insight into their privacy and security practices, as well as explain the data the app may collect and why — all before users install the app,” the company said in a blogpost.
Google is following Apple’s approach to app privacy. Apple has already introduced privacy nutrition labels, where each app needs to reveal the kind of data they are collecting from the user.
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Google’s post confirms that Play Store users will see a new summary on an app’s store listing page. It will showcase what type of data is collected and shared, such as location, contacts, personal information (e.g., name, email address), financial information, and more.
The listing will also explain “how the data is used, such as for app functionality, personalization, and more.” An app’s page will also soon showcase “whether data collection is optional or required in order to use an app.”
For a user’s safety purposes, the summary will also highlight the security practices the developer has used like data encryption. It will also mention whether the app “follows Google’s Families policies” and whether the app has been “independently validated against a global security standard.”
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The company has even shared a timeline for its safety section that shows that it is giving developers plenty of time to adapt to the new changes on the Google Play Store. Developers will be needed to start submitting their information starting October and the new safety section will be made available to users from early 2022.
Developers are getting a deadline till April 2022 for getting the safety sections of their apps approved. Google says without an approved section, the new app submission or app update may be rejected from being listed.