Google’s upcoming new mobile operating system, Android L, will for the first time include provisions to encrypt user data by default, rather than providing encryption only after it is turned on by users.
The move was unveiled in a Sept. 18 story by The Washington Post as part of Google’s latest push to better protect the data of its millions of users, especially in light of allegations made in 2013 of government snooping in Google and Yahoo data centers. Android L is expected to be released by Google in October.
A Google spokesperson confirmed the upcoming changes. “For over three years Android has offered encryption, and keys are not stored off of the device, so they cannot be shared with law enforcement,” the spokesperson told “As part of our next Android release, encryption will be enabled by default out of the box, so you won’t even have to think about turning it on.”
Apple also recently announced that the new iOS 8 operating system found in its just-released iPhone 6 smartphones and other new devices also includes default data encryption for users
In a statement on Apple’s Website, CEO Tim Cook said the company is renewing its commitment to user privacy. “At Apple, your trust means everything to us,” Cook wrote in a letter posted on the new Apple privacy site. “That’s why we respect your privacy and protect it with strong encryption, plus strict policies that govern how all data is handled.”