Spotify has released a new privacy policy that has caused an uproar because it suggests that Spotify can collect things like contacts, photos and media files that the user has on their mobile device.

The music streaming service will also now be able to track a user's location data as well as their browsing activity when they visit a site that has the Spotify widget on it. While the company has said that users can opt-out of this collection, it is still causing anger.

"In our new privacy policy, we indicated that we may ask your permission to access new types of information, including photos, mobile device location, voice controls, and your contacts," said Spotify CEO Daniel Ek in a blog post entitled 'SORRY.' "Let me be crystal clear here: If you don't want to share this kind of information, you don't have to. We will ask for your express permission before accessing any of this data - and we will only use it for specific purposes that will allow you to customize your Spotify experience."

Also significant in the new user policy is the fact that Spotify shows who it will be sharing that user data with. Most importantly, it will be sharing user data with advertisers. This is significant because of the fact that the vast majority of Spotify's 75 million strong user-base is using the free, ad-supported version of the service. It's important to note, however, that the change in policy will also apply to those using the paid version of the service.

In response to the anger, Spotify says that the privacy of its users is the company's "highest priority," and that users can opt-out of sharing some of this data if they wish. Many, however, who might not be as tech-savvy, will not know to opt-out of the data collection, which is a problem for those aware of what kind of data Spotify is collecting.

"Again, we have heard your concerns loud and clear. We are also going to update the new Privacy Policy in the coming weeks to better reflect what we have explained above," continued the blog post.

Photo: Sorosh Tavakoli | Flickr

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