Pokemon Go: Gotta catch all your personal data

Pokemon Go: Gotta catch all your personal data

If you signed into Pokemon Go with your Google account, you might have just handed your digital life over to the game’s developers.


Maybe you gotta catch ’em all, but you’re not the only one with collection fever.

The developer of the wildly popular Pokemon Go, Niantic Labs, has full access to your Google account if you used it to log into the game from an iOS device. In response to reports of this all-you-can-eat data buffet, Niantic said in a statement that it’s drastically limiting the access it requests going forward and that it didn’t access anything beyond user IDs and email addresses.

“We recently discovered that the Pok√©mon GO account creation process on iOS erroneously requests full access permission for the user’s Google account,” the company said in a statement. “Once we became aware of this error, we began working on a client-side fix to request permission for only basic Google profile information, in line with the data that we actually access.”

But for the time being, the full account permission could give Niantic access to all of your information, as well as the ability to post, delete and send things from your account. In other words, logging in with your Google account is a super effective way to hand over your email, contacts, photos, documents — everything!

You’d have no way of knowing you granted all this access to begin with if you just downloaded the game and logged in with your Google account. To see whether you’ve entered a ghastly Pokemon panopticon, you’d have to go into your Google account settings and see which apps have full access. (And you may be able to revoke access and keep playing.)


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