Privacy of Default Apps in Apple’s Mobile Ecosystem

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Users need to configure default apps when they first start using their devices. The privacy configurations of these apps do not always match what users think they have initially enabled. We first explored the privacy configurations of eight default apps Safari, Siri, Family Sharing, iMessage, FaceTime, Location Services, Find My, and Touch ID. We discovered serious issues with the documentation of these apps. Based on this, we studied users’ experiences with an interview study (N=15). We show that: the instructions for setting privacy configurations of default apps are vague and lack required steps; users were unable to disable default apps from accessing their personal information; users assumed they were being tracked by some default apps; default apps may cause tensions in family relationships because of information sharing. Our results illuminate on the privacy and security implications of configuring the privacy of default apps and how users understand the mobile ecosystem.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCHI '24: Proceedings of the 2024 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
EditorsFlorian Floyd Mueller, Penny Kyburz, Julie R. Williamson, Corina Sas, Max L. Wilson, Phoebe Toups Dugas, Irina Shklovski
ISBN (Electronic)979-8-4007-0330-0
Publication statusPublished - 11 May 2024
MoE publication typeA4 Conference publication
EventACM SIGCHI Annual Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Honolulu, USA, Honolulu, United States
Duration: 11 May 202416 May 2024


ConferenceACM SIGCHI Annual Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
Abbreviated titleACM CHI
Country/TerritoryUnited States
Internet address


  • Privacy
  • Ecosystems
  • Mobile Devices
  • Apps


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