Control What Apps Have Access to Contacts Information on iOS

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Have you ever noticed that some apps pull information from your iOS contact list, such as people’s names, numbers, and contact information? Or, on the contrary, how some apps should be able to access your address book, but not, and then are feature limited? While this is done by choice, it is quite easy to overlook these settings during the initial installation of many apps, or to forget which of the “Allow” or “Do not allow” settings you have chosen. Fortunately, this is very easy to see and can change in either direction.

To adjust which apps can and cannot access the contacts list on an iPhone, iPad, or iPod, visit the iOS privacy settings on the device.

Here you can access the correct settings:

  • Open Settings and then go to “Privacy”
  • Tap “Contacts” to view the list of applications that have requested access to the address book
  • Set the switch to OFF or ON for apps that you want or don’t want to have access to contact information

This will show you a list of the apps that have requested access to address book data as well as their current access rights. By toggling these settings, you can control which app can or cannot access general contact information.

Every app saved in this list has requested access to the contact list at some point, the ON switch means it currently has access, the OFF switch means it is currently not.

Control which apps can access Contacts in iOS

You often see many socially oriented apps in this list, such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. For good privacy practice, it is wise to exclude access from apps that appear inappropriate to require such information, apps you don’t use, and developers you don’t trust. For example, if a single-player game from a sketchy developer requests access to the contact list for no apparent reason, does they really need this information in order for the game to function and play? Probably not, which is why you may want such apps disabled. On the other hand, apps like Skype and Google Voice do make sense to have contact information, since those apps are used directly for communication.

Keep in mind that some apps don’t work as expected, or at least aren’t full featured, if they don’t have access to the contact list. For example, the Find My Friends app is basically useless without access to the address book, as there is no direct way of knowing who your friends are without accessing that list or being added manually.

This feature has been around in iOS for a while, although its appearance has changed a bit depending on the version you’re using. Here’s what it looks like in previous versions of iOS, while the image above shows the Privacy> Contacts section in modern iOS:

Control which apps can access Contacts in iOS

Changing settings in this list will not affect how contacts sync between iOS devices or Macs, as it is managed separately in iCloud settings.

OS X users will find that there are the same kind of control options on the Mac in System Preferences.

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The time to complete the Control What Apps Have Access to Contacts Information in iOS tutorial is 10+ minutes.

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Apple

What are the supported Operating system?

mac OS


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