Mobile app developers must now conspicuously post and follow privacy policies just like websites and other commercial online services according to California Attorney General Kamala Harris. On October 30, the Attorney General’s office began sending warning letters to app developers notifying them that they had 30 days to comply. Time is now up. And the consequences are potentially substantial with the law carrying fines of up to $2,500 per download.
The Attorney General’s office sent about 100 warning letters to the developers of some of the most popular apps in this first round, stating that it was the first step in enforcement against those developers. Given the high proportion of apps without posted privacy policies, it is likely that additional letters will be sent. While no more formal enforcement actions have been reported, the Attorney General has indicated that she and her office are prepared to sue developers if necessary. In addition, the Attorney General has reached an agreement with the major app platforms to require that apps distributed through their platforms have clear privacy policies.