Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook speaks at the Apple Worldwide Developer conference in San Jose, California, U.S., June 4, 2018. REUTERS/Elijah Nouvelage
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Apple Inc. changed its App Store rules last week to limit how developers use information about iPhone owners' friends and other contacts, quietly closing a loophole that let app-makers store and share data without many people's consent.In the years following the launch of the App Store in 2008, contact-list abuse surfaced from time to time, and in 2012, Apple added a way for users to explicitly approve their contacts, photos, location information, and other data being uploaded by developers.Apple said last week that developers have generated $100 billion since the App Store launched.While Apple is acting now, the company can't go back and retrieve the data that may have been shared so far.The difference is that Google mostly keeps quiet about how it uses people's data for advertising, while Apple often talks about not collecting user information or building profiles of them.The Bloomberg News app also asks for access to users' contact lists, and other web services access email address books, so it's not just an Apple or Google problem.
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