Ever since the Facebook Cambridge Analytica scandal broke, people have (rightly so) been more concerned about all the data the major tech companies hold about us. People also want an easy way to access all the data and download a copy for themselves.
To this end, major tech companies including Google, Facebook, and Twitter have created download tools that allow you to see and download every bit of data the company has about you. But what about Apple?
They too have just released their direct download tool (thanks to the EU’s new GDPR rules), which allows you to download all the data Apple knows about you
But what does this data include? Unlike other tech companies, Apple doesn’t keep as much information about their users as Facebook and Google does. Where those companies store your location and message history, photos, and ads you’ve clicked on, Apple only stores records of the content you’ve downloaded through its various stores, like iTunes, the App Store, and its iBooks and Podcasts stores. That’s in addition to your Apple hardware purchases and repair history, as well as customer service requests.
Apple does NOT store copies of your emails or message history except for a short time after you delete them. Following that, Apple wipes the data from their systems for good.
Still, if you’d like to see all the limited information the company does have on you, Apple has a pretty easy way of getting it. Here’s how:
- Go to privacy.apple.com.
- Enter your username and password of your Apple ID.
- On the next screen, click Continue.
- Under the “Get a copy of your data”, click the Get Started button.
- On the next page, you’ll see a list of all the data Apple has on you. Select the data you want to download by checking the checkbox next to it.
- Now click Continue.
- On the next screen use the drop-down menu to choose a maximum file size that you want to download your data in. Choices are 1GB, 2GB, 5GB, 10GB, or 25GB. Apple will divide your data into files of this size or smaller.
- Click Complete Request to confirm your download choices.
Apple will then email you letting you know your data is being gathered and it will email you a download link within seven days. Apple uses this time period to make sure your data was actually requested by you and not someone else.
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