Yesterday we reported the accusations hurled against Google of allowing third-party app developers to read user’s private Gmail messages. Now the tech giant published a blog post to explain its partnership with app developers and reiterate the vetting process that they need to pass to view and use users Gmail data.
Google started off by saying that users have access to a variety of “non-Google apps” and services that let them get the most out of their Gmail account. Users can track e-mails, add events directly to your schedule, but these features are only made available once they start sharing your data with these apps. And all this happens after such apps go through a “multi-step review process”.
Also, the process is not just automated, but also requires manual review of the developers, who need to fulfill two primary requirements as Google disclosed in its blog post. The app developers first need to “represent themselves accurately. Secondly, they need to ask for access to data they’ll need for certain functions and avoid asking for additional permissions. Google went on to add in the blog post;
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.
As we discussed yesterday, Google also took the decision to stop scanning your emails to personalize ads and show them to you within Gmail. This allows the email giant, which now reigns supreme among Microsoft and Yahoo, to court more company users as they can be sure that Google won’t get their hands any of their sensitive info.
While Google is trying to pacify users in its blog posts, the tech giant may need to rework its developer policies to make its data sharing secure and protect user privacy or their data from falling prey to malicious developers. Until then, you can review apps you have allowed the permission to read your Gmail messages and revoke access for those you no longer use or find fishy.