How to Use App Tracking Transparency on iPhone

Learn how to allow or block any iPhone tracking app

What to Know

  • To block apps from sharing your data: Settings > Privacy > Tracking > Allow Apps to Request to Track > move slider to off/white.
  • To allow some apps to share your data while blocking others, move the slider to on/green and then make your choice within each app.
  • All apps on iOS 14.5 are required to support the App Tracking Transparency feature that lets users block the sharing of their data.

This article explains how to use Apple's App Tracking Transparency feature, which gives users the ability to choose which apps can share their data with third parties.

How Do I Turn on App Tracking Transparency on iOS 14?

You can't turn App Tracking Transparency on and off, per se. The feature is part of iOS 14.5 and up and part of all apps, so it's there whether you use it or not. What people mean by turning on App Tracking Transparency is whether you use the feature to block all data sharing by apps or if you give yourself the chance to decide which apps can share your data and which can't.

To choose on an app-by-app basis which apps can track and share your data, follow these steps:

  1. Go to Settings > Privacy > Tracking > Allow Apps to Request to Track > move slider to on/green.

  2. Open any app you already have installed on your phone or install a new app from the App Store and open it.

  3. If the app wants to share the data it collects about you with third parties or track you across third-party sites and apps, it has to disclose this in a pop-up window. In addition, some apps may include extra information about what they want to track and why, and why they think you should let them.

  4. In the pop-up window, tap Ask App Not to Track to block sharing of your data or tap Allow to approve it.

    Setting up and using Tracking privacy features on iOS.

Prefer to block every app from sharing your data? Do that once, and apps won't ask again. Just go to Settings > Privacy > Tracking > Allow Apps to Request to Track > move slider to off/white.

What Is App Tracking Transparency?

App Tracking Transparency is an Apple policy and feature that gives users more information about and control over how apps collect and share users' data.

The feature doesn't stop the collection of data. That's still allowed. However, it blocks sharing that data with third parties, data brokers, and tracking users across websites and apps owned by companies other than the app maker.

App Tracking Transparency lets users block all data sharing or allow some apps to share while blocking others.

For complete information about the feature, check out Apple's App Tracking Transparency page.

Is App Tracking Transparency Mandatory?

With the release of iOS 14.5, every app in the Apple App Store must comply with Apple's App Tracking Transparency policies (need to upgrade to iOS 14.5?). That means apps must support the ability for users to opt-out of data sharing. Users can choose whether to enable the feature and what apps they allow to share their data, but every app must comply. Even better, apps have to give all users the same experience, regardless of whether they opt-in or out of data sharing.

Want to know all of the kinds of data each app wants to collect about you? It's listed on the app's page in the App Store, in the privacy nutrition label section.

How to Change App Tracking Transparency Settings

Want to see which apps have requested to share your data or change decisions you've already made about which apps can do that? Follow these steps:

  1. Go to Settings > Privacy > Tracking.

  2. This screen lists all of the apps that have requested to track and share your data. If the slider is on/green, you've granted that app permission to share your data. To stop sharing, move the slider to off/white.

    The Tracking settings menus on iOS.
  3. Block all apps from tracking and sharing, move the Allow Apps to Request to Track slider to off/white.

    Your tracking slider could be grayed out if you're a child under 18, you created your Apple ID in the last three days, or your Apple ID or device has a configuration profile that limits tracking.

  • What apps for iPhone protect against tracking?

     If you use Safari on your iPhone, you can install a content blocker such as Norton Ad Blocker or Safari ad-blocking plugins to reduce ads and tracking. Blocker tracker apps such as 1Blocker go further by using a firewall and VPN to protect your device from trackers. 

  • How do I prevent cross-site tracking on the Chrome app for iPhone?

    While the web and Android versions of the Chrome browser offer a "Do Not Track" feature, it's not available for iOS. You can take steps to protect your privacy by managing your Google Account settings and choosing what data you're willing to share with Google services. Alternatively, use a privacy browser such as DuckDuckGo, which doesn't store your IP address or track you across the web.

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