Rather than signing in to apps using your Facebook or Google account and handing over all your information, the new “Sign in with Apple” feature will protect your data.
Announced by Apple software engineering chief Craig Federighi at the company’s developer conference overnight, the feature will authenticate users using Face ID on an iPhone without turning over any of their personal data to a third-party company.
Federighi compared it with existing single-sign-on methods (through Facebook or Google).
“Now this can be convenient, but it also can come at the cost of your privacy — your personal information sometimes gets shared behind the scenes and these logins can be used to track you,” he said.
“This experience is meant to let you have control over your data.”
The app will still be able to track how someone has used it, without the user having to create a new account specifically for the app.
There will also be no need to continually hand over your email address when signing in to new apps.
Apple will now be able to generate random email addresses to be used just for the one app.
“That’s good news because we each get a unique random address, and this means you can disable any one of them at anytime when you’re tired of hearing from that app,” Federighi said.
While this is a great innovation in terms of protecting user privacy, it holds consequences for advertisers and publishers.
Companies will no longer be able to use apps to stockpile their email databases, such as how Clive Palmer used his ‘Humble Meme Merchant’ game in the leadup to the recent election.
An advertiser’s email database can also be matched with a publisher’s to target people who are or are not customers with the advertiser.
It is also a direct move against Google and Facebook, which rely on user data for targeted advertising to generate revenue.
Sign In With Apple is the biggest middle finger to tracking services and social sign ons.
— Matthew Panzarino (@panzer) June 3, 2019