Apple just did something wonderful for your privacy in the next iOS release, it’s making Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA) an ‘explicit’ opt-in function now. What the heck is IDAF and what does it mean to me? IDAF is a sinister process where apps share your data with marketers so those marketers can optimize ads and get more people to use the app. That’s all fine and good if you decide to opt-in. Up till now, you could only explicitly opt-out by going into your iPhone settings and changing it.
Yesterday Apple killed the IDFA without killing the IDFA, by taking it out of the depths of the Settings app where almost no-one could find it — although increasingly people were finding it and turning it off — and making it explicitly opt-in for every single app. (via
Apple has pretty much taken a shot across the bow for an $80 Billion dollar industry by now making users who download an app that uses IDFA to click the ‘opt-in’ button.
Fighting for your privacy means controlling your data. It means putting guardrails around who gets to use it and for what purpose. This is one of the reasons why I’m reclaiming my data starting with the Indie Web. Of course I want to post to social media sites like Twitter but I want to know about data’s activity, how it’s being used, and who is interacting with me. For example, Facebook completely locks in your data and activity. I can’t extract any of the likes or comments, it’s all inside their walls and it’s how they make money off of you with your data.
That’s one of the reasons why I hate the Facebook walled garden with a passion but I can’t shake that for the time being. I have too many friends and family members locked in there and they like the ability to correspond with their friends and family members. So I have to work around it.
I’m paraphrasing here but Sun Tzu said to the effect “why do you attack a well-fortified position head-on? You’ll lose all your men. Instead, ignore it and look for other weaknesses.”
Maybe it’s time to ‘wall up’ my data and keep my activity away from Facebook and Google. Walling up is also one of the main reasons why I host this blog myself and why I use the DuckDuckGo search engine. I can safely search knowing that my search results aren’t tied to an account somewhere that’s building a marketing profile of me and selling it.
Start now. Protect your data and reclaim your content.
It appears that Facebook has thrown in the towel in fighting the new Apple update. The will stop collecting identifier for advertisers (IDFA) data on their apps.
Everything we can do to thward FB is a win in my book.
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