Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Be Mindful - Does Mobile Apps Respect Your Privacy?

'Stickybeak' Apps Threaten User Privacy 

Not surprisingly, a new report has found mobile apps are failing to provide users with basic privacy protections.

The report's authors put the failures they detected into three basic categories. Sixty percent of the apps they studied either:

  • Did not disclose how they used personal information
  • Required the user to give up an excessive amount of personal data
  • Communicated privacy policies in type too small to be read on a phone's screen

As the Wall Street Journal points out in this blog post, it's not currently required for apps to have a privacy policy. However, we may soon see changes in this area of the law, especially where health apps are concerned. Currently, there are more than 100,000 health-related apps just available via smartphones.

Be mindful of any app that does not include a privacy policy, and train yourself not to just hit "Accept" on those data-gathering permission requests that pop up after you download a new one.

You should absolutely understand what you are being asked to give up to take advantage of the app. Is it worth it?

No comments: