Sen. Al Franken has privacy questions for Pokemon Go creator

Pokemon Go, the virtual treasure hunt that’s taken cellphone addiction to a new level, already knows it’s a phenomenon. Another sure indication: It’s got the attention of tech and privacy hawk Sen. Al Franken.

The Minnesota Democrat sent Pokemon Go creator Niantic a letter Tuesday, asking for details about how the augmented-reality app uses the personal information it collects from players.

Here’s the first of Franken’s seven questions to Niantic CEO John Hanke:

Pokemon GO has stated that it collects a broad array of users’ personal information,
including but not limited to a user’s profile and account information, their precise
location data, and information obtained through Cookies and Web Beacons. Can you
explain exactly which information collected by Pokemon GO is necessary for the
provision or improvement of services? Are there any other purposes for which Pokemon
GO collects all of this information?

Niantic, a San Francisco-based Google spinoff that’s also backed by Nintendo, had already told some media outlets that it intends to reduce the amount of information it collects from those who are hunting Pikachu and friends. This was after reports that iOS users (and some Android users) who downloaded the app ended up giving it access to all of their Google account information, including emails, documents and more.

Franken has asked Niantic to respond to his questions, which include concerns about sharing data with third parties and how kids’ information is being used, by Aug. 12.

 

Photo: Pokemon Go is displayed on a cellphone in Los Angeles on July 8, 2016. Just days after being made available in the U.S., the mobile game Pokemon Go has jumped to become the top-grossing app in the App Store. (AP/Richard Vogel)

 
 

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    What a flaming pathetic excuse for a US Senator. Stole his way into office, and now is tackling the critical Pokemon Go issues…

 
 
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