Privacy Policy for AdMob

Last updated on 01 July 2022 by Sara Pegarella (Law school graduate, B.A. in English/Writing. In-house writer at TermsFeed)

Privacy Policy for AdMob

AdMob is a mobile application advertising platform created by Google. It's used to promote mobile apps and to help advertisers make money through mobile apps by enabling in-app advertising.

AdMob also works with Google Analytics to help app owners get valuable insight and information about their app's usage and the effectiveness of any advertising campaigns. It works on both iOS and Android platforms.

This article will explain why you need a Privacy Policy if you use AdMob, and how to update yours to comply.

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AdMob's Privacy Policy Requirements

AdMob has a few requirements for mobile app developers, including the requirement that they must:

"have and abide by a privacy policy that clearly discloses any data collection, sharing and usage that takes place on any site, app, email publication or other property as a consequence of your use of Google products. The privacy policy must disclose to users that third parties may be placing and reading cookies on your users' browsers, or using web beacons to collect information as a result of ad serving on your website"

This requirement comes from the Privacy Disclosures section of the Google Publisher Policies:

Google Publisher Policies: Privacy-Related Policies section - Privacy Disclosures

Anyone using AdMob is required to adhere to Google's Publisher Policies, as is stated in the AdMob and AdSense Program Policies agreement:

AdMob and AdSense Program Policies: Adhere to Google Publisher Policies requirement highlighted

Google states in its Behavioral Policies document, in the "Personalized Advertising" section, that "your app's privacy policy may need to be updated to reflect the use of personalized advertising (formerly known as interest-based advertising) served via the Google Mobile Ads SDK."

Google Behavioral Policies: Personalized Advertising section

Google continues on to say that "because publisher pages and laws vary across countries, we're unable to suggest specific privacy policy language."

Google is requiring you to be proactive in finding out what laws and platform requirements you're required to adhere to, and to update your Privacy Policy accordingly.

In sum, if you use Google AdMob, Google requires that you:

  • Disclose to users that you collect, share and use personal information as a result of your use of AdMob, and
  • Keep a legally compliant, updated Privacy Policy for your geographic region and mobile app distribution platform

App Store Privacy Policy Requirements

App Store Privacy Policy Requirements

Even if you don't use AdMob, the app store you distribute your app on might require or highly recommend a Privacy Policy.

For example, the Apple App Store Review Guidelines mentions that all iOS apps distributed through the Apple App Store "must include a link to their privacy policy in the App Store Connect metadata field and within the app..."

Apple App Store Review Guidelines: Data Collection and Storage section - Privacy Policy Link required section highlighted

Laws Require a Privacy Policy

Laws Require a Privacy Policy

Additionally, international laws require the inclusion of a Privacy Policy or privacy practices disclosure if your website or mobile app collects and uses any personal information from users, which AdMob does do.

AdMob and other advertisement services always collect some sort of personally identifiable information from users in order to function, which means you must disclose this data collection to your users.

Best practices calls for disclosing this information to your users via a Privacy Policy.

It's the best way to stay compliant, and users are familiar with the format and availability of these legal documents when they're interested in finding out more about your app's privacy practices.

A Privacy Policy or notice is required by law in most countries, including the following:

Because Google, app stores and international laws all call for a privacy notice or Privacy Policy if your mobile app uses an advertising service that collects personal user information, such as how AdMob does, you're going to need to include one with your mobile app when you use AdMob.

Examples of AdMob-Compliant Clauses in Privacy Policies

Examples of AdMob-Compliant Clauses in Privacy Policies

As noted above, AdMob requires that your Privacy Policy discloses any data collection, sharing and usage that occurs because of your use of AdMob. You also need to disclose that third parties may be placing cookies as a result of serving ads.

Here are a few examples from different mobile app developers or companies that offer mobile apps that use AdMob, and how this is explained via a Privacy Policy.

NikitaDev's Privacy Policy has an Advertising clause that lets users know that personal data is collected for advertising, that cookies may be used, and that AdMob is used:

NikitaDev Privacy Policy: Detailed Information on the Processing Personal Data clause - Advertising section with AdMob

JG Mobile notes its use of AdMob in a clause about third-party tools that collect analytical data:

JG Mobile Privacy Policy: What Information do we Collect clause - Third-party Tools section - AdMob highlighted

TimeTune's Privacy Policy has a clause titled "AdMob" that mentions the use of the service to show ads, and notes that it collects data to do so. The clause also mentions two privacy laws (the GDPR and the CCPA) and some law-specific requirements:

TimeTune Privacy Policy: AdMob clause

Here's how Ascendik discloses its use of AdMob and links to Google's opt-out page for customized advertising as well as to Google's own Privacy Policies. This helps users know more about AdMob specifically if they wish to learn more:

Ascendik Privacy Policy: AdMob clause

Summary

If you use Google AdMob for your mobile app, you're going to be collecting and using user data. This means you're legally required by Google, app store platforms, and international law to let users know about this data collection and usage.

The easiest and most commonly seen way to provide this disclosure is via a section in your Privacy Policy that lets users know that:

  • You use AdMob and/or other third party advertising platforms, and
  • These third parties will collect some information about the users' habits and/or devices

Consider providing a link to the AdMob Privacy Policy for users to review.

As you can see from the examples, you don't need to include a lot of detailed information in your disclosure. Just the mention that AdMob is in place and will collect and analyze information from users is adequate.

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Sara Pegarella

Sara Pegarella

Law school graduate, B.A. in English/Writing. In-house writer at TermsFeed

This article is not a substitute for professional legal advice. This article does not create an attorney-client relationship, nor is it a solicitation to offer legal advice.