Path issues apology; promises to delete contact info

Summary:Path's CEO responds with an apology following backlash over privacy concerns.

Path is on damage control mode following a huge uproar after it was discovered that the social media platform was uploading contact information from smartphones to its servers.

Now, "as a clear signal" but also a necessary PR move, Path is deleting "the entire collection of user uploaded contact information" from its servers.

Path is touted as a "smart journal," which operates quite like a news feed, taking some of the most popular elements seen on other social platforms and then organizing them like a diary or recap.

It also works with some of those social networks (i.e. Facebook, Foursquare, Tumblr and Twitter) by letting users check-in, update status messages and more directly within in Path, then repopulating the user's other social networking accounts.

Co-Founder and CEO Dave Morin explained on Path's website that "we now understand that the way we had designed our ‘Add Friends’ feature was wrong."

In the interest of complete transparency we want to clarify that the use of this information is limited to improving the quality of friend suggestions when you use the ‘Add Friends’ feature and to notify you when one of your contacts joins Path––nothing else. We always transmit this and any other information you share on Path to our servers over an encrypted connection. It is also stored securely on our servers using industry standard firewall technology.

With the latest update to the mobile apps for iOS and Android, Path 2.0.6 asks users if they want to opt in or opt out of sharing the contacts stored on their phone with Path's servers for finding friends and family on the "world’s first personal network."

Users do have the option of revoking this access later, but they'll have to email Path's service department individually.

Related:

Topics: Software Development, Browser

About

Rachel King is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in San Francisco, covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has previously worked for The Business Insider, FastCompany.com, CNN's San Francisco bureau and the U.S. Department of State. Rachel has also written for MainStreet.com, Irish Americ... Full Bio

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