More goes on right under our noses than what we’re actually aware of. For example, latest findings reveal that, on average, the most popular Android and iPhone apps happen to be sending your data to 3 different online services – probably three more than what you knew of.
- Experts tested 110 popular apps to see if they shared personal data with third parties
- A plethora of iOS and Android apps share your private information to third parties
- The bigger problem is Android and iOS don’t require any notification when apps collect data
- iOS’s LocalScope app takes the hat with a whopping 17 domains it shares data with
It’s easy to forget about having our data sent to marketers and advertisers, especially when they’re so stealthy we often don’t even realize what’s going on. A new analysis published on Jots and conducted by a team of experts “tested 110 popular, free Android and iOS apps to look for apps that shared personal, behavioral, and location data with third parties.”
And seeing that most users have stopped thinking twice about clicking on “I agree with all terms of service and conditions,” the researchers found an interesting result: heavy information distribution. The findings showed third parties got their hands on personal information in 73 percent of the Android apps tested.
At the same time, 47 percent of iOS apps shared “geo-coordinates and other location data” with third parties. But most concerning of all is the final point researchers made in their study summary, the fact that users are not even notified when so many apps share their data – such as email addresses or search terms – with third parties.
We should be worried about the fact that this is happening to us without our explicit consent. A recent Pew Research survey of more than 2,000 Americans showed that 54 percent of users gave up on installing an app when they found out how much personal information they would need to share to use it.
At the end of the day, most data ended up at Google, Facebook, or Yahoo, some of the greatest third parties currently fighting for your attention. Your biggest nightmare are health apps, which also send words you’ve searched to no fewer than five domains, a fact you’re most likely not aware of.
For example, 11 third-party domains receive information from Text Free on Android, while Map My Walk shared with 9 domains. When it comes to iOS, LocalScope takes the hat with a whopping 17 domains, followed by Map My Run and Nike+ each with four.
Image Source: The National