Apple puts ad tracking companies in check on iOS 14

Privacy is a fundamental axis of Apple’s policy. All the changes that are introduced in the devices and operating systems have a component centered in this direction. Securing user data, avoiding being geolocated, avoiding sharing data without permission … are actions that are unthinkable in an ecosystem where the user is increasingly important to the interests of data analysis companies. In iOS 14 a new feature has been introduced that allows the user revoke permission for apps to track behavior on websites and apps in order to show personalized content for each user.

Privacy in iOS 14 more important than ever

Before we begin, we will briefly discuss an important concept to understand the implications of this change in iOS 14. The IDFA is an identifier that allows specialists to anonymously identify iOS users. Arguably, they are cookies on iOS, although in reality it does not have a similar behavior.

This identifier allows the devices to be measured randomly throughout the installation and use of the application. This is why this identifier is so important. Because it is capable of mediating user interactions with advertising campaigns, installations and interaction with applications. In this way, specialists can offer personalized content depending on the use of the terminal that is being given.

In iOS 14 Apple intends to ask the user nap according to this identifier and the trace it is going to undergo. Data tracking is a dark part in which dozens of companies such as Facebook and Google are involved. Especially, the social network Facebook has been repeatedly investigated for improperly crawling content without the user’s consent.

Tracking refers to the act of linking user or device data collected from your application to user or device data collected from other companies’ applications, websites, or offline properties for measurement or targeted advertising purposes. Tracking also refers to sharing user or device data with data brokers.

When the user starts an app for the first time, in iOS 14 he receives an alert asking the user If you allow behavior tracking to receive personalized content. If read carefully, no one with any knowledge would allow tracking. However, there are two situations where tracing is allowed without user permission:

  • When the user or device data is linked to third party data only on the device and is not sent, it was in a way that could identify the user or device.
  • When the data agent with whom you share data uses it solely for fraud detection or security purposes and solely on your behalf. For example, fraud related to credit cards.

Little by little Apple is ending a reality that will change irremediably. The user has to have the power of decision even for such banal traces as how long we stay in an application. That is why iOS 14 is a step towards a completely clean operating system.

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