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[Updated] Audacity Is the Newest App to Become Spyware Thanks to New Owners

Audacity audio tool

One of the most popular open-source audio programs is now considered spyware after recent updates and changes to the privacy policy. We’re talking about Audacity, the famous audio manipulation program that was acquired by a new company two months ago, which then quickly made all sorts of changes.

Update, 7/9/21 12:58 am Eastern: Since this post went live, several new details have emerged regarding Audacity. For starters, none of these changes are active in the program yet but will be with an upcoming optional update. Then, ArsTechnica has more details regarding how it was poor wording with the privacy policy more so than actual “spyware” changes. Audacity’s policies are no different from most apps and programs we all use daily, and most of the changes have already been approved by its open-source community of fans and users. 

To be specific, the latest update to Audacity 3.0 came with a slew of privacy policy changes that suggest the desktop app is collecting user data and sharing it with “buyers,” not to mention third parties, including state regulators, where applicable.

According to Fosspost, changes to the privacy policy section on the Audacity website indicates that the new company has since added several personal data collection tools. Even worse, the data stored is apparently being sent back to servers in Russia, the United States, and the European Economic Area.

Audacity does not need to “phone home” or connect to any outside sources as a desktop application with no actual online functionality. However, that new privacy policy from parent company Muse Group says it does collect data and does so in a way that’s both overarching and super vague. IP addresses are stored in an identifiable way, data is collected for “law enforcement,” but there’s no mention of what kind of data, etc.

The open-sourced community overall, especially Audacity users, aren’t too pleased with the changes. At this point, Audacity definitely looks like Spyware. The tool might not be malicious, but it’s not good either.

via Fosspost

Cory Gunther Cory Gunther
Cory Gunther has been writing about phones, Android, cars, and technology in general for over a decade. He's a staff writer for Review Geek covering roundups, EVs, and news. He's previously written for GottaBeMobile, SlashGear, AndroidCentral, and InputMag, and he's written over 9,000 articles. Read Full Bio »