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Old July 5th, 2013, 08:08 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Surprised Is data privacy even possible?

I'm relatively paranoid about data security (I run my own mail server, web server, cloud services, groupware, etc). I currently have an iPhone and am on the verge of buying a Samsung Galaxy S4 in the next couple of days.

To be honest, the only thing that gives me pause is that the more I read about Android, the more data I hear about going to Google. Most of it I don't care about, but I do care about the privacy of my contact information, and to a lesser extent, my calendar data. As a Software Engineer that's worked in Big Data as well as credit card transaction processing, I know what companies like Google can (and do) do by correlating that data with other data, so this isn't an unfounded fear. I also feel that it's not my place to give other people's contact information to Google. I'm trying to become more comfortable with the concept, but I'm definitely not there yet.

Are there reasonable precautions I can take? I know I can turn off syncing with GMail before I add any contacts, and that will help. Is there anything else I can do?

Are there apps that I should seek replacements for and avoid?

Are there other settings I should look for?

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Old July 5th, 2013, 09:57 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by dj_segfault View Post
I'm relatively paranoid about data security (I run my own mail server, web server, cloud services, groupware, etc). I currently have an iPhone and am on the verge of buying a Samsung Galaxy S4 in the next couple of days.

To be honest, the only thing that gives me pause is that the more I read about Android, the more data I hear about going to Google. Most of it I don't care about, but I do care about the privacy of my contact information, and to a lesser extent, my calendar data. As a Software Engineer that's worked in Big Data as well as credit card transaction processing, I know what companies like Google can (and do) do by correlating that data with other data, so this isn't an unfounded fear. I also feel that it's not my place to give other people's contact information to Google. I'm trying to become more comfortable with the concept, but I'm definitely not there yet.

Are there reasonable precautions I can take? I know I can turn off syncing with GMail before I add any contacts, and that will help. Is there anything else I can do?

Are there apps that I should seek replacements for and avoid?

Are there other settings I should look for?
It should be possible, but keep in mind that apps can access your contact list as well - with permission displayed in the app of course. You can choose to not install that app, but short of rooting, you can't really install the app (and deny just that permission. (At least in my case, I found in a recent audit that there is a rather large percentage of apps that will request access to contacts).
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Old July 5th, 2013, 08:48 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The one thing that probably surprised me more than anything I've seen yet, is how I walked into my house the first day with the S4 and it automatically connects to my WPA2 encrypted router.

That one shocked the crap out of me. I had no idea that Google is apparently more than happy to not only store every shred of my personal information, but also my router's info from my previous phone. Probably be an interesting day when Google decides to tick off the wrong group of people.

The beauty of any of these systems is that no one can stay off the radar - as long as you might have a friend to kindly give out all your contact info in their contact list. How do you avoid that, it's not even in your control?
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Old July 5th, 2013, 09:50 PM   #4 (permalink)
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The one thing that probably surprised me more than anything I've seen yet, is how I walked into my house the first day with the S4 and it automatically connects to my WPA2 encrypted router.

Is it possible it's because you let your previous phone backup your settings? I turned that off and have never run into that.
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Old July 5th, 2013, 11:14 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Is it possible it's because you let your previous phone backup your settings? I turned that off and have never run into that.
No idea. If the Virgin Mobile Evo V 4G phone backed up it's settings, how would I have known that? To where did it back up these settings?
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