Google Tightens Up Privacy Rules For Gambling Apps

According to Stuart Godfree, Managing Director at mkodo, in the most recent changes to the Google Play Terms of Service, the technology giant revealed the welcome development of allowing real money gambling applications in 15 additional jurisdictions, effective March 1.

Since much of the industry had previously been limited to Apple’s platform, this change prompted many operators to rethink their app strategy, and a process to create and launch real-money gambling apps for Android users started.

Personally Identifiable Information (PII)

Although this phase was supposed to take some time because Google must approve the content from a compliance standpoint before it can be released, another change in the latest terms surrounding Personally Identifiable Information (PII) and what kind of data an app harvests from a smartphone now seems to have further slowed the roll-out.

The new PII guidelines are important, and they revolve around data leakage from apps, which is often caused by third-party APIs. An Android app must now be fully open to the user and announce what information it collects and shares.

ALL Play Store applications reviewed

In an unprecedented development, Google is now reviewing ALL existing applications in its Play Store and applying the new privacy regulation retrospectively, automatically removing apps that do not meet the new requirements and requiring a new application.

For a variety of purposes, this is important. To begin with, Google has previously allowed the community to self-regulate and has taken a more relaxed approach to content on its open platform, earning it the nickname “the Wild West” by others.

Security and privacy

Second, Google is showing that it is introducing a tougher approach on security and privacy in particular by retroactively applying the new guidelines to existing applications that have not yet been revised to match the current regulations and automatically deleting them from the Play Store.

Apple, on the other hand, still offers providers who violate its rules a grace period before removing an app.

Since Google is now reviewing all current applications as well as new requests, the time it takes to launch a new application on Google Play has increased, and we won’t see a slew of new real-money gambling apps on the web for a while.

The explanation for this new approach is unclear, but Apple has long been known for its strict approach to privacy and data, and it appears that Google is finally realising that they must compete in the same league.

Although the current delays are not particularly serious, they are a significant departure from Google’s previous approach and may surprise those who expect the deployment of an app to be a simple and painless operation, especially when compared to Apple.

Shielding users from malicious apps

Overall, this is a good move since it will shield users from malicious apps. All businesses must start treating personal information safely, and it can no longer be assumed that just because someone uses an app, firms have free and unrestricted access to any level of data.

If this is a company’s standard operating procedure, it must be stated in the privacy statement so that customers are aware of what information can be accessed and how it will be used.

Nonetheless, Google’s shift is important, and operators and developers should keep it in mind as they prepare their Android strategy for the future.