Google responds to Gmail data allegations

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Google responds to Gmail data allegations

Search giant responds to allegations that third-party developers have detailed access to Gmail user's data.

Following a WSJ article that claimed third-party app developers have surprisingly detailed access to Gmail data, Google has written a blogpost that attempts to rebut any controversy.

"We continuously work to vet developers and their apps that integrate with Gmail before we open them for general access, and we give both enterprise admins and individual consumers transparency and control over how their data is used", opens the post by Suzanne Frey, director, security, trust, & privacy, Google Cloud.

The WSJ story claimed that although Google employees cannot read emails, the same policy does not extend to third-party developers. These developers can allegedly read your full emails in Gmail, as well as access details like the recipient’s address and time stamps. However, the WSJ did not uncover any wrongdoing from third-party apps or services using Gmail.

The aftermath of the Facebook Cambridge Analytica data scandal has increased awareness of data privacy across the board, both for enterprise and consumer-facing companies. Google’s position means the company is particularly keen to be seen as strong on data protection - a position it shored up in June 2017 when it announced that Gmail inboxes would no longer be scanned for ad targeting reasons.  

Corporate users of G-Suite must rely on admins to whitelist non-Google apps that can access their users’ data, while individual Gmail users should visit Security Checkup to review permissions that have been granted to non-Google apps, and revoke them if required.

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