How private is your menstrual cycle app?

Quanto è privata la vostra app per monitorare il ciclo mestruale? thumbnail

Experts from Mozillaa nonprofit Internet research company, have studied more than 20 pregnancy tracking apps he was born in period to verify its privacy not safety features.

How private is your menstrual cycle app?

After the fall of the federal abortion protections in the United States, pressure on the apps they collect has increased data on pregnancy to preserve people’s privacy. A new study has found that many of them aren’t all that safe.

“Most of these products collect large amounts of personal data and share it extensively,” he said Ashley Boydvice president of Mozilla.

Of the 10 pregnancy appsof the 10 menstrual trackers and gods five wearable devices examined in the study, only seven were deemed safe regarding user data and privacy practices.

Most of them collected large amounts of personal data it’s li shared with third parties, as data brokers and advertisers. The study also looked at the safety practicesrevealing that eight apps do not meet minimum security standards and allow weak passwords.

According to a 2019 survey published by the Kaiser Family Foundation, menstrual cycle tracking apps are used by nearly one in three women in the United States. Each year, they record a great deal of information on durate of the menstrual cyclesui types of contraceptives used and on others Health problems.

The concerns of the experts

Experts fear that this data could be used by law enforcement to prosecute people who they try to have an illegal abortion. While there is still no evidence that period tracking data is used in investigations, other tech companies are already grappling with the requests from law enforcement agencies.

Last week it was revealed that a 17-year-old teenager and her mother in Nebraska are coping criminal charges after Facebook delivered data, including private messages, relating to an abortion that the girl had obtained illegally.

The study found that most of the apps reviewed had “misleading” data sharing policies. Furthermore, it lacked clear guidelines on how law enforcement requests for data would be handled.

Mozilla has divided the apps into “not disturbing” and “very disturbing” and has labeled as “privacy excluded” those that present significant privacy issues. Only three apps and four wearables of the more than 20 examined made it through the selection. Among them we find among the app for monitoring menstruation Hold on and the device Fitbit by Google.

Hold on it has been described as “a sexual and reproductive health application designed with privacy in mind”. Furthermore, does not collect personal data that could be investigated by law enforcement or obtained from other entities. The study found that other apps weren’t that clear.

The researchers therefore encourage users to inquire before choosing a tracking app.