Your iPhone apps could be tracking you.  Here's how to stop them

Your iPhone apps could be tracking you. Here’s how to stop them

Have you ever had that experience where you search for new clothes online to get ready for summer, then you are shown advertisements on the web for the same clothes you just looked at? If so, you’ll be happy to know that your iPhone includes a feature that can opt out of ad tracking in the apps you use and help strengthen your online privacy.

Apple’s App Tracking Transparency feature gives you more control over which apps can track you on your iPhone and how. Unless you explicitly allow an app to track you (including those made by Apple), it can’t use your data for targeted ads, share your location data with advertisers, or share your advertising ID or other identifying with third parties.

This change, first unveiled at Apple Worldwide Developers Conference in 2020 and deployed with iOS 14.5drew support from privacy advocates but reviews from companies such as Facebookwho said the move would be harm its advertising activity.

The move was accompanied by other efforts by Apple to increase transparency as well as privacy, which CEO Tim Cook called “fundamental human right“When Apple released iOS 14.3 in 2020, users started seeing the app”nutrition labels” informing them of the categories of data requested by an application before downloading it from the App Store.

Here’s how to use the new App Tracking Transparency feature to control which apps can track you.

How to Disable App Tracking on New Apps

When you download and open a new app, you’ll get a notification asking if you want to let the app track your activity on other companies’ apps and websites. You will also see information about what the app would track. You can type Ask the app not to track to block this activity or Allow.


When you download an app, a notification appears giving you a choice whether or not to allow the app to track you.


You can also turn off app tracking for each app you download by going to Settings > Privacy & Security > Trackingand disable Allow apps to request tracking. This means that any app that tries to ask for your permission will be automatically blocked and notified that you have requested not to be tracked. And any apps (other than those you’ve allowed to track in the past) won’t be able to access your device information used for advertising, according to Apple.

It is important to note that this does not mean that the ads will disappear. It just means you’ll be more likely to see generic ads, not one for that pair of shoes you clicked on once.

How to Disable App Tracking on Previously Downloaded Apps

For apps you’ve already downloaded that have tracking permissions set up, you can still turn these permissions on or off for each app.

Below Settingstap an app, then tap to disable Allow Tracking. Or go to Settings > Privacy & Security > Trackingand tap to enable or disable each app you will see in the list of apps that have requested permission to track your activity.

All app developers are required to request tracking permission. If Apple learns that a developer is tracking users who have requested not to be tracked, it will either have to update its tracking practices or potentially be rejected by the App Store.

Apple believes privacy features like these are a differentiator for its products. Cook said this because the company’s business model is not built on selling adshe can focus on private life.

Even so, it’s important to keep in mind that when you ask apps not to track you, you’re essentially just denying app developers access to the identifier for advertisers (IDFA) on your iPhone. Developers use your device’s IDFA to track you for targeted advertising purposes. Denying access to your iPhone’s IDFA doesn’t necessarily mean that app developers won’t track you in other ways, so it’s essential to be aware of the apps you use and how you use them. interact with them.

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