Privacy Policies for Mobile Applications

Privacy is a crucial issue for most of the advertising
driven companies we invest in.  Many of
our companies have been in the forefront of ensuring that not only do they take
the proper care of the data, they also make their policies transparent to
interested users.

As mobile apps become increasingly relevant, what happens to
consumer data from these devices becomes equally important. A solid, updated
privacy policy is crucial to control the risk of mismanaging data, especially
considering the recent regulatory
developments
. While many developers want to do right by their users, there are
not a lot of resources out there to help them figure out how.

Now, First Round portfolio company Docracy presents an
open-source privacy policy for mobile apps: http://www.docracy.com/mobileprivacy/  As with all the legal documents on Docracy,
it’s Github like structure lets developers branch the document (i.e., make a
public copy that will maintain a relationship with the original, and publicly
show what’s changed) to customize it for their application.

I like Docracy’s initiative because offers a practical
solution: three
different
versions
covering the most common types of policies to provide a sensible, fair starting
point for app developers. Like a Github of legal documents, Docracy’s founders
have 6 years of experience in building mobile apps, and they know how much
easier life would be for app creators if public standards could be established.

I’d encourage developers to take a look, and incorporate
some form of privacy policy in their mobile applications.  The gatekeepers are starting to enforce
standards that will make all that necessary, and Docracy is trying to make it
simple.