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Study Shows Your Phone is Spying on You – and it’s your fault

According to Northeast University, your phone may be spying on you.

Recent research based on the idea and paranoia of Facebook and other applications showing you ads about an item that you were previously searching for online, can be very true. As discovered, over 9,000 out of 17,260 popular apps that were tested had shown to record information through permissions from the user. But these apps aren’t stealing personal information or user name / passwords, they’re taking a snapshot of your activity for advertising purposes and selling this information to third parties like Facebook. This is how some social media sites know what ads to show you based on your interests – over 8,000 apps were sending information to Facebook alone.

According to NorthEastern University, the study was conducted with 10 Android devices. Although the test was only conducted on Android devices doesn’t mean the iPhone is spy-free. Both Android and iOS have permission settings, and it is up to the user to allow or deny individual app permissions for each application installed – including native apps. Remember the old saying from Apple, “We will never sell your personal information”? While this may be true, it doesn’t mean they won’t sell screenshots of your activity to third parties or allow apps on the Apple Store not to do so once you install them. Although Apple’s devices cannot be proven either way, it doesn’t mean you should trust the word of mouth if they won’t prove their practice to the public. Always safeguard your information.

How to manage your permissions on iOS: 

General -> Settings -> Restrictions -> Enable Restrictions -> Enter your Password -> Slide the toggle to ‘Off’ to restrict permissions for a specific app.

How to manage your permissions on an Android 8.0 device: 

Settings -> Apps -> Tap Hamburger Menu -> App Permissions -> Set / Manage Permissions for Each App From Each Category.

With new apps created and downloaded everyday, your safety should come first. If there is an app that requests permission before it is installed, look the permissions before you tap ‘OK’. You may be surprised at what you find. A good example is the My Disney Experience App for iOS and Android. This application wants to collect and gain access to many of your activities, some of which include location, phone, camera and microphone. I personally don’t think that the Disney Company needs to gain access to all of this information, especially when they are making thousands of dollars just from your one or two week vacation.

If you have any comments of questions about this article or any other article, please feel free to send me a message from my contact page.

 

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