Niantic calms Pokemon Go data access fears

Ben Parfitt
Niantic calms Pokemon Go data access fears

Pokemon Go co-creator Niantic has said that it is not accessing iOS users' entire Google accounts.

It emerged yesterday that, if a Google account is used at sign-in, the iOS version of the game grants itself complete access to the associated user account upon installation. This led to fears that Niantic would have access to emails, documents and a potential harvest of personal data.

Users are able to register for the game via the Pokemon website and not use their Google account, although this will wipe progress.

The extent of the data access can only be discovered when checking an account's permissions.

While the extent of what data can or cannot be accessed is still up for debate, Niantic has come out and said that it is not accessing such data, that the app was never meant to ask for such permission in the first place and that the whole thing will be changed soon.

We recently discovered that the Pokmon Go account creation process on iOS erroneously requests full access permission for the user's Google account,” Niantic told MCV. However, Pokmon Go only accesses basic Google profile information (specifically, your User ID and email address) and no other Google account information is or has been accessed or collected.

Once we became aware of this error, we began working on a client-side fix to request permission for only basic Google profile information, in line with the data that we actually access. Google has verified that no other information has been received or accessed by Pokmon Go or Niantic.

Google will soon reduce Pokmon Go's permission to only the basic profile data that Pokmon Go needs, and users do not need to take any actions themselves.”

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