Published On: Wed, Jun 29th, 2022

Things We Saw Today: Warnings To Clear Period Tracker App Data After Roe v. Wade Overturned

Flat tracker of menstrual period on calendar. Woman hand holding mobile phone to keep track of menstruation cycles. Girl monitoring ovulation or pregnancy period by tracking app on smartphone screen. Image: Getty/Hanna Siamashka.

Since the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization overturned Roe v. Wade, many are sounding the alarm on how times have changed in the last few decades. Namely, the internet now exists, thus does our digital footprint and the issue of digital privacy (a.k.a. the lack thereof). People are urging others to not only delete their period tracking and fertility apps, but go through the steps of ensuring the data from the apps is wiped.

These are apps like Clue, Flor, Natural Cycles, and more. Even for those seeking to conceive or who object to getting an abortion themselves, the data from a period/fertility app can be used against them, possibly in the case of a miscarriage. Critics of this movement to delete and clear data say that this doesn’t go far enough. The Electronic Frontier Foundation and others warn against ignoring other issues can leave you vulnerable via your browsing history, calender app, non-encrypted messaging (including email), and more. This graphic from the Digital Defense Fund shows how abortion activity can accidentally be tracked and used against you.

The Mary Sue

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