Clinical Edge

Summaries of Must-Read Clinical Literature, Guidelines, and FDA Actions

Data Sharing to Third Parties Prevalent in Depression, Smoking Cessation Apps

Key clinical point: Users of smartphone apps for depression and smoking cessation do not get the chance to make an informed choice about whether or not their data are shared with third parties.

Major finding: Despite 23 of 25 apps (92%) noting that data might be sent to a third party, 33 of 36 apps overall (92%) transmitted data to third parties.

Study details: An examination of the top 36 depression and smoking cessation apps for Android and iOS in the United States and Australia accessed in January 2018.

Disclosures: One of the investigators, Mark E. Larsen, DPhil, reported receiving grants from National Health and Medical Research Council. The other authors reported no relevant conflicts of interest.


Huckvale K et al. JAMA Netw Open. 2019. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2019.2542.