07/20/2012 06:57 pm ET Updated Jul 21, 2012

Clueful Pulled From Apple's App Store

Privacy-conscious iPhone users, the app of your dreams is no more. Clueful, an app that policed your iPhone's other apps for privacy violations, was pulled from the App Store this week, and both the company that made it and Apple are keeping their mouth shut about why.

What Clueful did, as The Huffington Post described back when it was released in May, was tell you exactly what sort of misbehavior your iPhone apps were up to. Does the app you just downloaded access your address book? GPS coordinates? Social networking accounts? Clueful claimed to be "the world's first and only app" to tell you so.

But on Thursday SecurityWeek reported after two months of being available, Clueful, made by the antivirus firm Bitdefender, was pulled from the virtual iPhone shelves.

"Apple informed Bitdefender’s product development team of the removal - for reasons we are studying - after it was approved under the same rules," Bitdefender said in a statement online. "iPhone owners who already use Clueful privacy may continue to do so."

Bitdefender performed a seemingly innocent function, telling users exactly what data each of their apps were pulling from them, but nevertheless found itself in the crosshairs of Apple's notoriously strict app police even after getting approved in May. We're unlikely to know precisely what Apple's motivation was; both Apple and Bitdefender declined to comment to SecurityWeek. HuffPost put in its own requests and will update if we hear back. For now we can only speculate about how Clueful fell our of favor, but Apple retains the right to restore the app to iTunes and could at any time.



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