Shocking Google admission means you should probably ditch Gmail add-ons

Google is still allowing third-party developers to scan the content of user’s Gmail accounts, who are in-turn permitted to share that data with other firms, it has emerged.

The firm came under fire earlier this year for revealing third-party services like email clients, trip planners and customer relationship management tools could access Gmail accounts with the permission of users.

However, the company has added to the furore by admitting those developers are entitled to share that data with other third-party companies, subject to users agreeing to the privacy policy.

“Developers may share data with third parties so long as they are transparent with the users about how they are using the data,” Google said in a letter (via Wall Street Journal) to the US Senate Commerce Committee, which has been investigating Google’s data-sharing habits since July.

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Susan Molinari, who is Google’s VP of public policy and government affairs, added in the letter that “the privacy policy [is] easily accessible to users to review before deciding whether to grant access.” She said users can easily remove app access on the Google account page, or just refuse to install the app in the first place.

When asked by reporters about the emergence of the letter, Google referred press back to the blog post initially published in July.

In it, Google wrote: “We continuously work to vet developers and their apps that integrate with Gmail before we open them for general access, and we give both enterprise admins and individual consumers transparency and control over how their data is used.

“You can visit the Security Checkup to review what permissions you have granted to non-Google apps, and revoke them if you would like. For G Suite users, admins can control which non-Google apps can access their users’ data through whitelisting.”

The story comes after Google made a big song of dance about halting the practice of scanning emails to target users with advertisements. What’s worse? Allowing Google to target you with ads? Or allowing a potentially limitless number of companies access to your Gmail data?

Will this have you deleting your third-party Gmail add-ons? Let us know @TrustedReviews on Twitter?