Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...

These are the 10 most invasive iPhone apps available on the App Store

Published Mar 16th, 2021 6:18PM EDT
iPhone app privacy labels
Image: Meta

If you buy through a BGR link, we may earn an affiliate commission, helping support our expert product labs.

Apple enraged the developers of some of the most popular apps on its mobile App Store last year when it announced that it would be adding privacy labels to listings on the digital storefront. These labels can inform users about the data that any given app collects from them and whether that data is linked to the user or used to track them. Those labels went live on the App Store last December, and we’ve gleaned a great deal from them since then.

We’ve already told you about the astounding amount of data companies like Facebook and Google collect from their iOS apps, but they are far from being the only offenders. Earlier this month, cloud storage company pCloud made a list of the most invasive apps on the App Store, and some of the entries might surprise you.

First up, here are the ten apps that share the most data with third-party companies. In order to target ads to specific individuals, companies need your data, and these apps are more than happy to provide it:

  1. Instagram
  2. Facebook
  3. LinkedIn
  4. Uber Eats
  5. Trainline
  6. YouTube
  7. YouTube Music
  8. Deliveroo
  9. Duolingo
  10. eBay

“[Instagram] shares a staggering 79% of your data with other companies,” explains pCloud, referring to Instagram checking 11 of the 14 labels. “Including everything from purchasing information, personal data, and browsing history. No wonder there’s so much promoted content on your feed. With over 1 billion monthly active users it’s worrying that Instagram is a hub for sharing such a high amount of its unknowing users’ data.”

Up next are the ten apps that collect the most data for their own purposes, and while there is some overlap, there are also more than a few newcomers that didn’t make the third-party data collection list:

  1. Facebook
  2. Instagram
  3. Klarna
  4. Grubhub
  5. Uber
  6. Uber Eats
  7. eBay
  8. Just Eat
  9. LinkedIn
  10. Twitter

“The study conducted here at pCloud revealed that 80% of apps use your data to market their own products in the app and beyond,” the company explains over on its website. “This includes things like apps serving you their own ads on other platforms, as well as in-app promotions for their own benefit, or for third parties who pay for the service. We revealed which apps collect the most data for this by analyzing how many of the possible 14 data categories each collects under Apple’s ‘Developer’s Advertising or Marketing’ section.”

Finally, pCloud also highlights 20 apps that share little to none of your data, which is quite novel based on what the team discovered as it examined the App Store. Some of these might actually surprise you:

pCloud lists the safest apps on the App Store. Image source: pCloud

Keep in mind, these apps still gather data, they just aren’t selling it to the highest bidder or using it to market stuff to you. Apps have been gathering, sharing, and selling data for years, but now that it’s all out in the open, maybe we’ll think twice before we download a new app. Either way, be sure to read pCloud’s full post.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.