Path privacy scandal leads to App Store changes

Photo-sharing service Path learned a hard lesson this year that resulted in a change to the way all iOS apps treat contact your lists.

Path founder Dave Morin. James Martin/CNET

Sometimes it takes a little nudge to do what we know we should.

After a blogger disclosed that photo-sharing service Path was uploading and storing people's complete contacts lists without having asked permission, user outrage ensued. A month later, a group filed suit against Apple, Path, Twitter, Facebook, Yelp, and eight other sites for doing the same.

The scandal led to Apple saying any apps that collect user contact lists without permission are in violation of its app guidelines. It then rolled out a software change to begin actively enforcing stronger contacts protection .

At the time, Path founder Dave Morin said the company did this to make the service better. And when it comes to social services, there's clearly an incentive to get people to connect. But this scandal was a good lesson for all app developers that people do want to connect with others, they just want to do it on their own terms.

Go back to the CNET 100

About the author

Jennifer Guevin is managing editor at CNET, overseeing the ever-helpful How To section, special packages, and front-page programming. As a writer, she gravitates toward science, quirky geek culture stories, robots, and food. In real life, she mostly just gravitates toward food.

 

Join the discussion

Conversation powered by Livefyre

Show Comments Hide Comments
Latest Galleries from CNET
10 mobile gadgets gone gonzo (pictures)
Apple in 2014: iPhone 6, iCloud hack, Beats and more (pictures)
The 12 most distinctive phones of 2014 (pictures)
Best mobile games of 2014
Nissan gives new Murano bold style (pictures)
Top great space moments in 2014 (pictures)