Jay-Z’s Samsung Magna Carta App Under Investigation

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By: / July 17, 2013

Jay-Z may have instituted #NewRules with the release of his twelfth studio album Magna Carta Holy Grail that was delivered to users exclusively through Samsung but now the app is under investigation by the Federal Trade Commission for possibly violating users’ privacy.

Users were required to provide personal information including their age, phone call history, and location when accessing the app. They were also required to cough up their Facebook and Twitter information in order to give the app permission to post status updates on their behalf. Still, the multi-prerequisites didn’t stop an estimated 1.2 million people from downloading the app and enjoying the sounds of Hov.

The advocacy group Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) prompted the Federal Trade Commission to investigate the app. “Samsung failed to disclose material information about the privacy practices of the app, collected data unnecessary to the functioning of the Magna Carta App, deprived users of meaningful choice regarding the collection of their data, interfered with device functionality and failed to implement reasonable data minimization procedures,” EPIC stated, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Samsung has offered their own response to EPIC’s complaint, claiming that the app followed standard procedure with other applications. “Any information obtained through this application download process was purely for customer verification purposes, app functionality purposes and for marketing communications, but only if the customer requests to receive those marketing communications,” the electronic company said. “Samsung is in no way inappropriately using or selling any information obtained from users through the download process.”

During a rare Twitter Q&A with Mr. Carter, Politico reporter, Dylan Beyers, asked about all of the privacy requirements. Hov responded, “sux must do better.” –Alley Olivier

Photo Credit: Getty