State AGs urge Apple to higher defend reproductive well being information



Ten state attorneys normal are urging Apple so as to add new protections for reproductive well being information contained in third-party apps hosted on the App Retailer.

In a letter despatched to CEO Tim Cook dinner, attorneys normal of California, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Massachusetts, North Carolina, New Jersey, Oregon, Vermont and Washington mentioned lax guidelines for safeguarding reproductive well being information might hurt sufferers or suppliers within the wake of the Supreme Courtroom resolution that overturned Roe v. Wade. 

The group mentioned location historical past, search historical past and adjoining well being information — info associated to previous, current or future reproductive well being of the consumer — might pose a threat to folks searching for or offering abortions, contraception or different reproductive care.

The attorneys normal argue Apple ought to require app builders to delete location, search and well being information that is not required for the app to operate. Apps must also present clear notices that element how their information is getting used, retained and shared in addition to solely present that information to 3rd events with a subpoena, search warrant or court docket order.

The letter notes that Apple incessantly touts high standards relating to information safety and privateness, and it ought to maintain third-party apps to its personal guidelines.

“At minimal, Apple ought to require apps on the App Retailer to fulfill sure threshold safety necessities, comparable to encryption of biometric and different delicate well being information saved on functions, use of end-to-end encryption when transmitting mentioned information and compliance with Apple’s consumer opt-out controls,” the attorneys normal wrote. “To make sure long-term compliance, Apple ought to conduct periodic audits and take away or refuse to record third-party apps in violation of those requirements.”

Apple didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.

THE LARGER TREND

After the Dobbs resolution got here down over the summer season, some safety specialists raised concerns information collected in reproductive well being and interval monitoring apps may very well be used as proof in states the place abortion is now restricted. Others word there is a variety of digital information that may very well be dangerous, like textual content messages or search historical past. 

The letter from state attorneys normal famous a recent report from the Mozilla Basis that discovered quite a lot of interval monitoring, being pregnant, and well being and health apps have poor requirements for information privateness. Different analysis has discovered many ladies’s well being apps share data with third events or do not clearly display privacy policies

ON THE RECORD

“Defending reproductive privateness within the wake of the Dobbs resolution is paramount. Regardless of selling privateness as considered one of its ‘core values’ Apple merely has not carried out sufficient to make sure that personal reproductive well being information collected and saved by apps is not going to be used to trace, harass or criminalize these searching for to train their reproductive freedoms,” New Jersey Legal professional Basic Matthew J. Platkin mentioned in a press release. 



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