Apple and Google ban location tracing software X-Mode Social

Apple and Google have given app developers seven days or more to remove the location tracing software from a company called X-Mode Social from their apps or face ban on App Store and Play Store, Wall Street Journal reported.
Slidebox imageApple and Google have banned X-Mode from collecting any location data from smartphones running their operating systems.

Apple is giving developers two weeks and Google is giving developers one week to remove X-Mode SDK from their apps.

Apple and Google disclosed their decision to ban X-Mode to investigators working for Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Oregon), who has been conducting an investigation into the sale of location data to government entities.

X-Mode works by giving developers code to put into their apps, known as an SDK, which tracks users’ location and then sends that data to X-Mode, which sells it. X-Mode pays the developer a certain amount based on how many users the app has. Its technology is being used in more than 400 apps. A review by Apple found 100 apps made by 30 developers contained X-Mode’s software.

X-Mode has provided data to several US government contractors for national security, counterterrorism and pandemic response, according to its privacy policy and public-spending records. X-Mode reportedly said it was re-evaluating its government work.

X-Mode drew some of its location information from apps with a predominantly Muslim user base, such as a dating app called Muslim Mingle and a prayer app called Muslim Pro.

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