A LinkedIn user has recently pointed out a privacy-invasive feature that the app has termed as a bug for now by the company. The user had reported that the app is copying content from the clipboard of the iOS device he had been using, which is a termination of the user’s privacy. It was not a time thing as per the user, and the app had repeatedly been copying the content from the clipboard.
After terming the copying issue, a behavioral bug, LinkedIn engineering VP Erran Berger stated that the reason behind the app copying what’s on the clipboard is to do an equality check on the clipboard and what is there on the clipboard the user is typing currently. Berger also added to this by saying, “We don’t store or transmit the clipboard contents” by writing the same on twitter. Here, he doesn’t clarify why such a check is required at all.
In any other circumstance, such behavior of the app wouldn’t have been possible to discover, but the new privacy feature that comes with iOS14 has added the opportunity here. It is a limited beta for developers as of now, but with the privacy feature present, it is possible to detect when an app is copying something from another app on the phone. The operating system will immediately notify the user if something like this happens.
With the help of the new privacy feature, users have been able to check up on many other apps and eventually spot any uncertain behavior from their end. A LinkedIn user posted a video on Twitter that depicted how the app was copying data from the clipboard. The user has tried to test whether this was happening or not, and the app was copying every word from the clipboard, as shown in the video.
The same user called out LinkedIn, saying that their iPad app was copying text from the notes app and other sources. To this, Berger replied that LinkedIn would get back to the user when they find a way to fix the bug and get it live on their platform.
Many other apps have also been called out by users for similar suspicious behavior, where they were repeatedly copying clipboard content. Last week itself, Tik Tok was highlighted as an app spying on data from other apps. Similar copying of data from the clipboard was also detected with Tik Tok, which led to more suspicions on the app. It was termed an anti-spam feature by the company, and they declared that it would be discontinued as well.
Soon, iOS 14 would be available to a wider number of users, and it is expected that more apps would be discovered that have been practicing such features for a long time. More users would be coming up with super strokes highlighting the flaws from more and more such apps, as user privacy becomes the primary concern moving forward.
Image source: TheVerge