The research also highlighted the disparity between what consumers expect and developers provide, with 70% of consumers saying it’s important to know exactly what personal information is being collected and shared, but lengthy and unclear privacy policies are rarely ever read or fully understood. The generator (called AppPrivacy) hopes to fix that issue. Using the tool is as simple as filling in a questionnaire, which the system then tailors into an easily understandable policy that fits your app and aims.
The group that designed it includes privacy experts from companies like Vodafone, InMobi, Kaspersky Labs and Mozilla, who worked to put together a framework based on global best practice guidelines from government agencies, privacy advocates and industry associations alike. Once developers provide details about how they’re going to use the data they collect, AppPrivacy churns out a short policy in HTML, which can then be further customised and embedded.
It’s all designed to take ten minutes or less, and can play a vital role in helping developers establishing the right relationship with their users. “Consumers’ trust in our industry will be built on transparency and ease of understanding in dealing with their private data,” explains MEF Global Chair Andrew Bud. “That’s a tough combination to deliver, and our research shows that many providers have struggled with it.” But with the rise of free and freemium apps, that’s only going to become more important as consumers data becomes the currency used to pay for everything from games to social networking apps.