Liberate

Warning: *privacy not included with this product

Liberate

Review date: April 25, 2023

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Mozilla says

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People voted: Very creepy

Created in 2019, Liberate is a meditation app designed to be a "safe space for the Black community to develop a daily meditation habit." The app provides wellbeing practices that better fit the lives and experiences of the BIPOC community with meditations targeted as such things as microaggressions, internalized racism, and ancestral healing alongside those aimed at dealing with anxiety, depression, stress, and gratitude. Free to download, a yearly subscription grants users access to a library of over 240 meditations and talks, offline listening, and exclusive gatherings. Unfortunately, we do have a few concerns about how safe a space for your privacy Liberate is.

What could happen if something goes wrong?

First reviewed April 20, 2022. Review updated, April 25, 2023

In 2023, we can't actually tell if the Liberate app is still supported, which is a concern as it still seems to be available for download in the Apple App Store (although we couldn't find it in the Google Play Store). We did manage to find a placeholder website that redirects from their original website with some basic information about the app. However, their privacy policy no longer seems to exist. The only privacy related information we could find was a statement on their placeholder website that simply states, "We respect your privacy" underneath a field to collect your email. All in all, we think this is a good app to skip for now as we can't confirm it is still supported, we can't find a privacy policy, and we don't know anything about their security practices.

Read our 2022 review:

Like many of the mental health apps we reviewed, Liberate raises a number of privacy questions and concerns for us. Take this line from their privacy policy, "We do not sell or rent your personally identifiable information to third parties for their marketing purposes without your prior consent." We take this to mean they may sell or rent your personal information to third parties.

The consent question is always a big one for us. How clearly does Liberate ask for consent when they want to sell or rent your personal information? People often rapidly click through terms of service and privacy policy agreement asks when signing up for an app. If you don't read Liberate's privacy policy closely you won't know they say, "By accepting the Policy during registration, you expressly consent to our collection, storage, use and disclosure of your personal information as described in this Policy." Does that mean you consent to have your personal information (but not health data) sold, rented, and shared with a number of third parties for purposes such as personalization, advertising, marketing, and more when you accept their policy during registration? It sure seems so but we can't tell for sure. Giving your consent should never be this confusing. And this is probably way beyond what most people expect will happen with their personal information when rapidly clicking through the registration process during sign up. that worries us a great deal.

Liberate says they can collect a fair amount of personal information, including name, email address, photograph, geolocation, IP address, device identifiers, and Facebook profile information if you opt to sign into their services through Facebook (which you should never do). They then go on to say they may combine your information with information they collect from other sources. So much personal information, so many questions about if they're selling it to others. It's good they say they won't share your personal data with third parties in order for that third party to provide direct marketing communications to you.

We have too many questions to feel good about Liberate's privacy practices. And we can't determine if they meet our Minimum Security Standards in part because they never responded to our email with privacy and security related questions sent to contact listed in their privacy policy.

What's the worst that could happen? Well, we worry you could download the app, speed through the sign-up and registration process and click "agree" to their privacy policy without realizing that by doing so you may have just given Liberate consent to sell or rent your data to who knows who. Maybe that's not so terrible, maybe it is. Regardless, we would like to see a meditation app designed to help with your mental wellbeing do better at being a safe space for your privacy.

Tips to protect yourself

  • Do not log in using third-party accounts like Facebook
  • Do not give consent for sharing of personal data for marketing and advertisement.
  • Chose a strong password! You may use a password control tool like 1Password, KeePass etc
  • Do not use social media plug-ins.
  • Use your device privacy controls to limit access to your personal information via app (do not give access to your camera, microphone, images, location unless neccessary)
  • Keep your app regularly updated
  • Limit ad tracking via your device (eg on iPhone go to Privacy -> Advertising -> Limit ad tracking) and biggest ad networks (for Google, go to Google account and turn off ad personalization)
  • Request your data be deleted once you stop using the app. Simply deleting an app from your device usually does not erase your personal data.
  • When starting a sign-up, do not agree to tracking of your data if possible.
  • mobile

Can it snoop on me? information

Camera

Device: N/A

App: Yes

Microphone

Device: N/A

App: Yes

Tracks location

Device: N/A

App: No

What can be used to sign up?

Facebook log-in possible

What data does the company collect?

How does the company use this data?

No Privacy Policy publicly available for this product

How can you control your data?

No Privacy Policy publicly available for this product

What is the company’s known track record of protecting users’ data?

Average

No known privacy or security incidents discovered in the last 3 years.

Can this product be used offline?

Yes

User-friendly privacy information?

No

Links to privacy information

  • No privacy policy found

Does this product meet our Minimum Security Standards? information

No

Encryption

Can’t Determine

Strong password

Yes

Security updates

Yes

Manages vulnerabilities

Can’t Determine

Privacy policy

No

Does the product use AI? information

Can’t Determine

Is this AI untrustworthy?

Can’t Determine

What kind of decisions does the AI make about you or for you?

Is the company transparent about how the AI works?

Can’t Determine

Does the user have control over the AI features?

Can’t Determine

*privacy not included

Dive Deeper

  • Mental health apps have terrible privacy protections, report finds
    The Verge Link opens in a new tab
  • 'Creepy' Mental Health And Prayer Apps Are Sharing Your Personal Data
    Forbes Link opens in a new tab
  • Mental health and prayer apps have some of the worst privacy protections, study claims, finding they 'track, share and capitalize' on users intimate thoughts and feelings
    Daily Mail Link opens in a new tab
  • Think meditation could help cope with microaggressions? There’s an app for that.
    The Washington Post Link opens in a new tab
  • Liberate Meditation Review
    One Mind Psyber Guide Link opens in a new tab
  • This Meditation App Helps Users Heal From The Mental Health Impact Of Racism
    Bustle Link opens in a new tab
  • A New Meditation App for People of Color
    Tricycle Link opens in a new tab
  • Julio Rivera Created The Meditation App Liberate To Help The Black Community Heal
    mitú Link opens in a new tab
  • Meet Julio Rivera, the founder of a meditation app designed for the Black community
    In The Know Link opens in a new tab
  • Black Founder Creates Meditation App for People of Color
    Black Enterprise Link opens in a new tab
  • Liberate: Meditation in a Safe Space
    TechAcute Link opens in a new tab
  • The Best Meditation Apps for a Moment of Calm in 2021
    Vogue Link opens in a new tab
  • The Best Mental-Health Apps for POC, According to Experts
    The Strategist Link opens in a new tab
  • Choosing a mindfulness app
    MIT Medical Link opens in a new tab
  • This Meditation App Was Created to Reduce Stress and Anxiety For BIPOC
    Popsugar Link opens in a new tab

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