Facebook, Apple and Microsoft have thrown their considerable weight behind ACT 4 Apps, a trade association for online application developers that seeks to educate them on how to protect user privacy with their products. The initiative, run by the Association for Competitive Technology, aims to bring privacy experts to app developer events to speak to them about how they can better incorporate privacy features into their technology. The group also seeks to educate app developers about the nuances of state and federal privacy laws.
“As an association of developers for developers, ACT possesses the firsthand expertise necessary to meet the challenges app makers face,” said ACT executive director Morgan Reed in a press release. “The ACT 4 Apps Initiative will educate app developers, providing the tools and resources necessary to meet privacy guidelines, build consumer trust, and grow their companies. ACT 4 Apps exists to simplify these steps so developers can concentrate on what they do best: making the next great app.”
Sponsoring the initiative is a big step forward in Facebook’s policing of its apps. Since third parties run online applications, Facebook has little control of them short of removing them from the page. However, their support of ACT emphasizes their seriousness about ensuring users’ privacy is protected from Facebook-hosted third parties.
Facebook, Apple, Verizon, AT&T and BlackBerry are joining other industry heavyweights like Microsoft, eBay, Oracle, Intel and VeriSign who are already sponsors.
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