A Tory minister has launched his own app and social network and it appears to have a major privacy flaw

‘Hi I’m Matt Hancock’ – culture secretary launches own app

New culture secretary Matt Hancock has become the first MP to launch his own smartphone app.

The app features picture galleries and videos of the West Suffolk MP and updates on his activities.

Matt Hancock, the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, this morning launched his own social network, the Matt Hancock App.

Quite apart from it being among the most awkward things ever done by a senior politician, the Matt Hancock app appears to have a serious issue, which gives the app and developers access to the user’s photos without their consent.

But Disciple, who developed the app for Mr Hancock, insist it’s not a bug, but an intentional feature.

A spokesperson said: “This is not a technical bug. It’s a feature within iOS 11, and the app has been been approved by Apple.”

A new feature in the most recent version of iOS allows apps to call up the photo picker without allowing the app to read all the pictures.

But this feature does not require the user to grant permission to the entire library. It’s not clear why the app would trigger the permission request if it were using this system.

The Mirror has attempted to contact Disciple to confirm why this would happen, but they did not respond.

The iOS version of the app allows users to post pictures to their social feed, prompting the phone to ask the user if they want to allow the app access to their photo library.

But even if the user clicks “don’t allow”, they are allowed to post the photo anyway.

The flaw does not appear to affect the Android version of the app.

The flaw could put the app in breach of Apple’s privacy guidelines for the iOS App Store and could break the Data Protection act, which it is Mr Hancock’s job to oversee.

Mr Hancock was appointed to the role of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Secretary in Theresa May’s chaotic reshuffle earlier this month.

His role includes oversight of data protection rules and the digital industries.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and Mr Hancock’s office have been approached, but had not provided comment at the time of publicaton.

So what do you think?

Tell us in the comments.

Source : http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-42902684
Source : https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/tory-minister-launched-app-social-11951866

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