Published: Wed, July 04, 2018
Tech | By Tabitha Holland

Of Course App Developers Can Read Your Email

Of Course App Developers Can Read Your Email

"Google does little to police those developers, who train their computers- and, in some cases, employees - to read their users' emails", the report further stated.

For those who might be concerned about this discovery, you can go to your Google Account's main page, head to the Sign-in & Security section and select "Apps with account access".

Google, whose popular email service has more than one billion users around the world, confirmed it allows hundreds of developers outside the company access to users' inboxes when given user permission, but says the companies are thoroughly vetted and bound by strict rules on the usage of data. Developers swear that manual access is used only оn rare and special occasions and is exclusively to improve customer experience, but we've heard that reasoning enough times to know it's just something PR representatives are forced to say. Like Android phone applications, when a user signs up to a service or platform they will be shown a message that asks permission for access to a range of data.


Google received plenty of criticism for having computers scan every Gmail email to deliver targeted ads.

In Google's case, outside developers must pass a vetting process, and as part of that, Google ensures they have an acceptable privacy agreement, The Journal reported, citing a Google representative.

But it turns out that your email isn't perfectly confidential as actual humans might be reading the emails you send and receive.


Developers whose apps have such access to your account can't change your password, delete your account, or use Google Pay on your behalf, but they can potentially read your email - or have their employees do it. The Internet giant recently rolled out new features for Android users to make it easier for them to navigate their Gmail accounts and review security and privacy options.

The revelation could not have come at a worse time as, following the Cambridge Analytica scandal, software companies are taking extra steps to protect data privacy of its users.

It's obvious what Google apps are - things like Chrome and Drive.


"Don't request access to information that you don't need", it warns developers using its API Services. If you're a Google Apps for Business user, you can set permissions so that your users can't even grant those sorts of permissions, either per app or in general. While third-party apps require user consent to access data, the consent form doesn't necessarily indicate that it may also allow humans to read user's emails.

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