The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has issued a set of guidelines to help mobile application developers and advertisers avoid running afoul of government privacy watchdogs.
The FTC said that the guidelines, which include tips on handling user information and avoiding deceptive or misleading marketing practices.
"Of course, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. Every app is different," the commission said in its report.
"Still, there are some general guidelines that all app developers should consider."
The Commission recommended that companies develop their applications with a "privacy by design" approach. By considering possible privacy concerns at the time of development, the commission said that developers will be better able to spot possible problems with the collection and handling of user data.
"Apply these principles in selecting the default settings for your app and make the default settings consistent with what people would expect based on the kind of app you’re selling," the FTC recommended.
"For any collection or sharing of information that’s not apparent, get users' express agreement."
The release of the report comes in the wake of a number of high-profile privacy and data collection cases which the FTC has handled in recent years. Earlier this year, it forced Facebook to commit to stringent privacy controls after the social network giant was accused of deceiving users over the privacy of their data.
Earlier this summer, the FTC imposed a $22.5m fine on Google over charges that it misled users about the way its privacy settings were applied on the Safari web browser.