‘There are no tech issues’ say makers of Matt Hancock’s app

A still from Matt Hancock's welcome video
A still from Matt Hancock's welcome video

West Suffolk’s Matt Hancock has become the first MP in the country to launch his own app, but has faced backlash amid allegations that it breaches users’ privacy.

Mr Hancock, who was recently appointed the Government’s Culture Secretary, says he wants to use the mobile app to connect with his constituents in a ‘safe, open and accessible online community’.

The app features a welcome video as well as pictures, articles, speeches and details on campaigns. Users can also post comments which will enable Mr Hancock to respond quickly to residents’ concerns.

But some iPhone users voiced concerns that the app, which is rated 17+, could access their photos without their permission - a claim which was denied by Disciple, the UK-based community platform which the app is partnered with.

Matt Phillips, from Disciple, said: “There is no technical issue with the app. The app is ICO registered and GDPR compliant. It uses standard Apple technology, for example iOS photopicker technology for access to the camera.”

This means that, despite denying the app permission to access photos, users can still upload photos of their choosing without anyone else seeing their photo album.