Google Confirms That Third Party Apps Can Read Your Gmail…. And They Say You Shouldn’t Worry…. Sure

I’m not the least bit reassured by Google’s response to this story on the fact that third party apps have the ability to read your Gmail. In a blog post that was clearly meant as an attempt at damage control, Google among other things said this:

A vibrant ecosystem of non-Google apps gives you choice and helps you get the most out of your email. However, before a published, non-Google app can access your Gmail messages, it goes through a multi-step review process that includes automated and manual review of the developer, assessment of the app’s privacy policy and homepage to ensure it is a legitimate app, and in-app testing to ensure the app works as it says it does.

So in short, it’s saying that apps do have the ability to read your Gmail. But there’s nothing to worry about because Google is out to protect you. Okay. That’s nice on paper. But it doesn’t make me feel better as they haven’t addressed the core issue. As in why do these apps have the right to read your email in the first place? And by not directly addressing it, it makes Google look no better than Facebook who as we all know has “issues” with third parties accessing user data. Thus I would strongly suggest that Google needs to come up with a much better answer to that question and come up with it now.


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