Yesterday, news spread of a crucial flaw in Pokemon Go‘s coding that essentially allowed the app and its creators to have full access to your Google account, after using those credentials to log in to the augmented reality game that’s taking the world by storm.
But rest easy and assured, bros. The creators of Pokemon Go are not using their newly minted goldmine to compromise your Gmail account or sift through your Google search history.
In fact, it seems the high level of access the app is granted when users login was the result of a mistake in developing – the game’s makers, Niantic (a spin-off a Google/Alphabet) never meant for privacy exceptions to be as far ranging as they are when gamers use their Google credentials for logging in.
According to a recently released statement released by Niantic Labs, however, the app’s overzealous permissions were just an error, and it hasn’t either received or accessed users’ private information, Google confirmed. The app only accesses users’ basic Google profile information – meaning their user ID and email address, it says.
The company also notes it’s working on a fix for the problem, so that it will no longer request full access to Google accounts, and Google will reduce Pokémon Go’s permissions on its side so current users won’t have to take any further action to protect their data.
Welp that’s kind of relieving, I guess? Now you don’t have to delete the game and start all over with some faux account because you’re too paranoid about Google looking at your stuff…hopefully.
The statement Niantic issued to TechCrunch sounds pretty resounding, to say the least.
We recently discovered that the Pokémon GO account creation process on iOS erroneously requests full access permission for the user’s Google account. However, Pokémon GO only accesses basic Google profile information (specifically, your User ID and email address) and no other Google account information is or has been accessed or collected. 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. Google has verified that no other information has been received or accessed by Pokémon GO or Niantic. Google will soon reduce Pokémon GO’s permission to only the basic profile data that Pokémon GO needs, and users do not need to take any actions themselves.
Have no fear, bros. Now Niantic won’t know how many times you’ve Googled “Kate Upton boobs” so you can sleep ant night and rest up for all that action as you seek to catch ’em all out there on those Pokestreets.