California: New privacy controls coming to Apple’s Mail app will hide data such as a user’s IP address and location as well as details about if and when someone opened a marketing email, the company announced in its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) late Monday.
The new Mail Privacy Protection feature, being launched later this year, will block data brokers and advertisers from gathering personal information that can be collected when users interact with emails sent to them.
Unveiled during the company’s annual WWDC, the new tools are the latest attempts by the firm to boost its stance as a privacy-first company, having earlier this year launched a wave of data use transparency tools including so-called privacy nutrition labels for all apps in its App Store.
Apple said that in addition to boosting its privacy features in the Mail app, it will now provide users with an ongoing App Privacy Report – found in the Settings app – which will give a breakdown of how different apps are gathering and sharing any personal data they collect.
In another upgrade, voice assistant Siri will now do on-device speech recognition – rather than process voice commands in the cloud – in an effort to better secure audio recordings and prevent unwanted recordings from being accessed by third parties.
In its Safari web browser, the company also announced it will introduce a feature called Private Relay, which will encrypt traffic leaving a user’s device and help hide who you are and the websites you’re visiting.
While a further tool called Hide My Email will enable users to create unique, random email address to input where an address is needed but someone is not comfortable sharing their real address – the random email will then forward any emails to a user’s main account.
“At Apple, we believe privacy is a fundamental human right. We don’t think you should have to make a trade-off between great features and privacy, we believe you deserve both,” Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering, Craig Federighi, said.