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Tech Crunch: Sen. Al Franken questions Niantic over Pokeprivacy policy

Wednesday, July 13, 2016
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Sen. Al Franken, top Democrat on the Senate Privacy and Technology Subcommittee and a strong advocate for consumer privacy, pressed app developer Niantic to explain how it collects Pokemon GO users' digital data and what it does with that information.

Pokémon GO—a new app where users explore the real world in order to play the game on their smartphones—has become a massive phenomenon within a week of its release, with reportedly 15 million downloads in just a few days. Despite its popularity, there are concerns about how the app collects, uses, and shares its users' personal information.

In response to those concerns, Sen. Franken, top Democrat on the Senate Privacy and Technology Subcommittee and a strong advocate for consumer privacy, pressed app developer Niantic to explain how it collects Pokémon GO users' digital data and what it does with that information. He also questioned Niantic on how they are ensuring consumers give consent regarding collection of their data.

As technology continues to rapidly advance, while at the same time outpacing or threatening to outpace many of our laws, Sen. Franken wants to ensure that American's privacy rights are being protected, which is why he's asking Niantic to give consumers a better idea of how their digital information is being used.

Tech Crunch reports:

"Always with his finger on the pulse, Senator Al Franken (D-Minn.) today sent an official letter to Niantic asking about particulars of the Pokémon Go privacy policy.

“I am concerned about the extent to which Niantic may be unnecessarily collecting, using, and sharing a wide range of users’ personal information without their appropriate consent,” the letter reads (PDF). “As the augmented reality market evolves, I ask that you provide greater clarity on how Niantic is addressing the issues of user privacy and security, particularly that of its younger players.”

You can read more here.

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