Evernote chief Chris O’Neill said an update to its privacy policy was “communicated poorly” and resulted in “some understandable confusion”, after users expressed concerns that the app maker’s employees would be able to view their data.

Evernote said it would roll out its new privacy policy on 23 January, which will see employees “exercise oversight of machine learning technologies applied to account content” for the purposes of developing and improving the service.

O’Neill explained that Evernote data scientists need to do spot checks as they develop its machine learning technology, but users control whether or not their data is used. Select employees may see random content to ensure the features are working properly but they won’t know who it belongs to, he clarified.

“While our computer systems do a pretty good job, sometimes a limited amount of human review is simply unavoidable in order to make sure everything is working exactly as it should,” the firm said in a statement.

Those who choose to participate will enjoy a more personalised experience, it added.

Users cannot, however, opt out of Evernote looking at their notes for reasons such as  a violation of its terms of services or to comply with legal obligations.