Ios privacy concern

Enclosed is a list of privacy permissions requested by the FT iOS application.

It includes Browsing History in many categories, among a whole sleuth of data. I could expect this from Google, but not from a trading app that I pay for either through the FX exchange rate commission per non-sterling trade, or through the Standard account I pay for. I have never seen anything quite like this.

Browsing History is the worst.


It could be an evil conspiracy to harvest your data. Or it could be innocent like making the magic link feature work.


I don’t see a problem with FT requesting our in-app purchases, User-ids and locations Etc,… most of these are so FT can send you Notifications, Links and track app analytics, which in turn helps to improve the app for the end user.

I’ve been using this app for a near 2 years and I’ve never had any issues, customer support has been one of the best I’ve come across. Anyway, these permissions are normal and I’m sure if they were doing anything Illegal they’d be found out in no time, given the times we live in.

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It is not a question of legality. It is proportionately and privacy.

Concerns are their use of :-

  • Browsing History. Which Browser history and from which app?

  • Location: They might want to know where I am, but they don’t need to know where I am. I do not wish them, or anyone else for this matter, to know where I am and go.

I don’t know of any company who didn’t resell their pseudo-anonymised user data. (Perhaps Proton Mail) It’s an easy win and easy cash flow


My understanding is that iOS essentially sandboxes each app when they run. Since it’s clear that you cannot use the app for web browsing in itself, it’s more likely that this permission is required due to the app opening links in a separate browser session (eg. the community discussions, terms and and conditions etc), which for iOS would be safari.

My opinion is that this permission is poorly worded by Apple and doesn’t properly explain what it actually means.


Personally, I never browse on my phone, though I understand your concerns over privacy as I’m of the same mind when installing apps, hence the reason why I’ll never install Twitter, Tiktok or Facebook or any social media for that matter lol.

The majority of the world do surf from their mobile devices. But let’s not digress.

Why does FT want Location and Browser History?


Location could be regulatory - to try and make sure that you’re in the UK when using the app/making trades. IIRC The National Lottery app asks for the same permission for similar reasons.

I very much doubt it’s asking for Precise Location. No one really cares where you are 100% of the time. You’re not that interesting.You’re a duck.I’ve seen your kind around. You’re probably in a pond paddling in your own filth and eating bread.

I know I’ve seen some apps that have a whole section listing the permissions and “Why we asked for this…”. They can be quite interesting as, like @JimmyJ says, what Apple describes as a permission and what a developer needs it for can be worlds apart.


So we cannot use the app when we are on holiday or abroad for business? Are you sure about this, or is this a guess?

What I really want to hear is Freetrade explaining why they want to know our Browser History, Where we go, and and What we do online? They have no need to know whether I am in Manchester or London, or googling for a hotel or a new top.

Sorry I tried to be clear when I said “could be” that I just guessing. This is why I don’t trust ducks or geese.

To carry on with the guessing theme though, for all either of us know, Freetrade might just want to make sure that you’re in the UK for X days out of every X days.

I’ll be pretty jealous if Adam and Viktor are personally checking to see which room of which building you’re in day and night whilst ignoring the million or so other users. I want some attention and love.


This is why I don’t trust ducks or geese.

I won’t trust cows either. :slight_smile:

" These companies sell, use or analyze the data to cater to advertisers, retail outlets and even hedge funds seeking insights into consumer behavior. It’s a hot market, with sales of location-targeted advertising reaching an estimated $21 billion this year. IBM has gotten into the industry, with its purchase of the Weather Channel’s apps. The social network Foursquare remade itself as a location marketing company. Prominent investors in location start-ups include Goldman Sachsand Peter Thiel, the PayPal co-founder."

So the question to FT:

Why does your app collect Location and Browser History data? By Why, I mean for what purpose. Is this another revenue stream?

@soko have you actually asked Freetrade? If so what did they say, if not you really should? Unless you enjoy the drama more than the answer … :thinking:

I thought they read this forum.

You’ll have read their privacy policy I assume?

As it tells you that they collect your IP address. This would fall under information that counts as coarse location, and it’s likely why they listed that.

For browsing Freetrade uses an in app browser component and you’ll notice it doesn’t have access to your normal browser’s information. But what it does have access to is information you previously entered into the in app browser. Like if you login on the forum in app it will store those details and remember them. I expect this is where this permission comes in.

You can of course ask Freetrade for more details. But I’d suggest reading over their privacy policy first.

You can also ask Freetrade for a list of sub processors if you wish


Surely if you were that concerned and wanted an answer quickly you would contact them directly?


Thanks for explaining this.

I didn’t find the app related privacy policy. Where did you get this from?

This fine. I have no problem with this.

This, again, is acceptable.

When I read Location I thought GPS course location, and not an IP address, which isn’t really a location, but a network allocation.

IP addresses all have location information associated with them, so they are good enough to give a rough location data. So they generally fall under coarse location data.

But again you’d have to ask Freetrade for specifics.

You can find it here Privacy Policy