Apple removes Infowars from the App Store for policy violation

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Credit: http://www.idownloadblog.com/2018/08/06/apple-shuts-down-alex-jones-infowars/

The Infowars app has been removed from the Apple Store for violating the store’s guidelines, Apple has confirmed. This is coming only a couple of days after Alex Jones was kicked out of Twitter—not the best of times for Jones to be honest.

All attempts to search for the app on the Apple Store did not yield any result as at last Friday. Attempt to get Apple’s official position on the removal of the app from its store was not successful as the company pointed Buzz Feed to the App Store Review Guidelines.

A second look at the first clause of the guidelines gives a clearer indication as to why the app was removed and may never return. The clause reads that “defamatory, discriminatory, or mean-spirited content, including references or commentary about religion, race, sexual orientation, gender, national/ethnic origin, or other targeted groups, particularly if the app is likely to humiliate, intimidate, or place a targeted individual or group in harm’s way.”

Prior to Apple’s latest action, Alex Jones’s personal accounts on YouTube, Facebook, Pinterest and recently Twitter have been banned.

Apple will from October 3 require all developers to to have a privacy policy in all apps in its store. Going forward, developers who have their apps on the App Store will now be held accountable about data of those who use their apps.

Starting October 3, 2018, App Store Connect will require a privacy policy for all new apps and app updates before they can be submitted for distribution on the App Store or through TestFlight external testing. In addition, your app’s privacy policy link or text will only be editable when you submit a new version of your app.”

This is an issue Apple should have dealt with before now—it is one that poses a lot of threat especially in terms of user data. That said, Apple’s latest action is coming at a time when other tech and social media giants are updating their policies in view of Europe’s GDPR regulations.

Apple has been cracking down on loads of apps on its App Store these past weeks. The Wall Street Journal recently reported that Facebook had pulled its Onavo Protect VPN app for iOS from the App Store. This followed previous complains made by Apple to the effect that the app violated its policies.

Onavo Protect VPN was acquired by Facebook five years ago. According to the developers, the app offered protection to users while browsing potentially harmful sites. It also warned them [users] about phishing scams, and prevent hackers from monitoring their web traffic.

While Onavo did all that, it also went as far as gathering user data into databases and sell it to third-party companies—a move viewed as working against Apple’s privacy policy.

While the Onavo app will continue to run on devices where it is already installed, new users will not be able to access or download it via the Apple App Store. Going forward, users who already have it installed on their phones will no longer be able to update the app.


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Author: Ola Ric

Ola Ric is a professional tech writer. He has written and provided tons of published articles for professionals and private individuals. He is also a social commentator and analyst, with relevant experience in the use of social media services.

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