Apple has kicked the Facebook VPN app Onavo out of the App Store. Facebook itself blocks an app on its platform. reason in both cases: Data collection.
In 2013, Facebook acquired the original Israeli VPN provider Onavo for a total of $100 to 200 million. A year ago the Wall Street Journal had already discovered that Onavo analyses the surfing behaviour of users – and passes this data on to Facebook. Now Apple has kicked the app out of the app store for violating its policies, Techcrunch writes. There are a few VPN provider with no log-files if you want a higher level of anonymity: http://www.Vpnnologs.com/.
This explicitly means that the collection of information about downloaded apps for analysis or marketing apps is prohibited, as one Apple spokesperson clarifies. In addition, an app provider must clearly communicate what user data it collects and how it is used. The reason Onavo has so far been available on the App Store seems to be that Apple has only recently updated its policies to reflect these restrictions.
Onavo: VPN app forwards user data to Facebook
Finally, Onavo states that it protects personal data and users from potentially harmful websites via a VPN. However, the provider passes on a number of data on app usage to the parent company Facebook. Their analysis enables Facebook to take a close look at future trends in the mobile sector. For example, Facebook is said to have known long before the public announcement of the relevant figures in 2016 that Snapchat is no longer growing as fast as before – and that this was probably due to the introduction of the Snapchat clone Instagram Stories.
- Onavo does not give users an effective way to object to the sharing of their data with Facebook.
- In addition, the information that the data is passed on is hidden far back in the app description, according to the critics.
- The VPN app has been downloaded more than 33 million times – by iOS and Android users.
- Onavo is still available in Google’s play store.
Data Hungry Apps
Meanwhile, Facebook itself is also taking action against applications on its platform that are too data-hungry. With Mypersonality is now an app that is said to have shared information about over four million users since 2012. It is currently not known to which companies the data was passed on. Mypersonality is one of the apps that was discovered after the Cambridge-Analytica scandal. Since the spring, Facebook has been investigating thousands of third-party apps. There are said to have been a total of 400 locks.