How to block these developers from getting personal information?


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  1. newsmartphoner

    newsmartphoner Well-Known Member

    I am disappointed to find out that Andriod, much like facebook gives these developers access to our personal information, what right do they have to get that and why do they need it? And why doesn't Andriod prevent or allow us to tell the developers what information we want to send instead of the other way around? I was told that for Iphone, everything has to go through Itunes which means only Apple has access to your data. I don't really like that either, but at least it's only one. What apps are people using successfully to prevent access?

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  2. valorian

    valorian Well-Known Member

    Can you get more specific? What type of information are you saying the developers are getting? Do you have examples?

    You should always read through all the permissions listed before installing any apps. If you see a permission you don't like do not install the app. Email the developer asking why they need the permission is question.
  3. newsmartphoner

    newsmartphoner Well-Known Member

    Here are a few examples of what I mean.
    This ap https://market.android.com/details?id=com.mobilityware.solitaire&feature=search_result requests read phone state and identity, for what?


    Why do some aps prevent the phone from sleeping? To me that means more battery drain and possibly more internet usage, am I wrong to think that? Perhaps I am too amature to understand what these things really mean, it would be cool if someone would explain in more detail in that case.

    What does full internet access really mean? Does that mean if the ap wants to waste your bandwith it can by uploading new things to your phone? Could a developer put a virus on your phone by having access like this?

    I am guessing this ap, https://market.android.com/details?id=com.eolwral.osmonitor&feature=search_result, has to access your personal log data in order to give you correct information, this seems reasonable to me, but what else do they have access to?

    Why does this ap https://market.android.com/details?id=com.jupiterapps.phoneusage&feature=search_result have to read my personal information like contact data and phone calls? that doesn't make sense.

    I can't find it now, but there was one ap that could access the full contact list, phone calls you have made, people you talk to, etc. and it was not an anti-virus or clean up type ap.

    Maybe I am just paraoid, but I feel most general aps do not need access to your identity, your phone number, etc. I tried emailing one developer of a big known ap, this one, https://market.android.com/details?...sMSwxLDEsImNvbS51cmJhbmFpcnNoaXAuYWlybWFpbCJd, and the email address doesn't even work!!! MSNBC needs this ap for some strange reason.. It's just really bothersome...
  4. zombie kat

    zombie kat Active Member

    My understanding is that the permissions apply not to what the developer gets but what the app gets, the app could have hidden code to forward information to the developer but this is unlikely.

    Needs the phone state so it knows what to display, identity is packaged with the phone state so it can
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  5. newsmartphoner

    newsmartphoner Well-Known Member

    zombie, thank you for taking the time to go through these one by one, it is highly appreciated and very informative!

    I wish each ap would explain in more detail why it needs certain information and what the ap is going to do with it. Though I seriously doubt most of them will take so much time to explain as most users pretty much just download at will.

    Some issues though for some games is that they also use prevent phone hibernating, which I don't understand. Of course for driving or something. Why do game aps need this? Such as card games.

    So for the Phone usage ap is it taking any information such as names and numbers or only the number of people I have stored in my phone and the number of calls I have made?

    Basically from your message I get the feeling that I really have nothing to worry about, however it would probably be a good idea to make sure the ap has many downloads already (say maybe 500-1000 at the very least) and a good portion of those( say 70-80%) are positive.
  6. anode505

    anode505 Member

    Having an app on the marketplace, I can tell you the developer does not set up the permissions list (other then using the code that needs them). That's done automagically by the store/google.
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  7. zombie kat

    zombie kat Active Member

    Any game that could involve a significant time looking at the screen deciding your next move might want to prevent the phone from sleeping. You and I may play these games in speed mode but my dear old grandmother can take over 5 min to choose a move in majong without getting bored. Personally I would love a PDF reader that would prevent sleep, my tablet keeps shutting down while I am reading a page
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  8. El Presidente

    El Presidente Beware The Milky Pirate! Moderator

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  9. newsmartphoner

    newsmartphoner Well-Known Member

    This is useful information, thank you for sharing that valorian. That is something that I suspect a lot of users would have no idea about.

    That makes perfect sense. Thanks

    But why would a game need access to your contacts or personal information as some of them do seem to need. I cannot find the one I was looking at before but if I do I will post it here for you to look at.
  10. newsmartphoner

    newsmartphoner Well-Known Member

  11. chanchan05

    chanchan05 The Doctor Guide

    Mantano reader and Repligo have options to keep screen on while reading.
  12. newsmartphoner

    newsmartphoner Well-Known Member

  13. valorian

    valorian Well-Known Member

    I do not use whatsapp but looking at one of the screenshots you can share you location with your whatsapp contacts. The app needs to know your location to use this feature.

    Again with the line app. In the center of the app description is say you can share your location. The app needs to know your location to use this feature.
    Here a quote from the app description.
    "Send photos, stickers, emoticons, and location information."
  14. mplevy

    mplevy Well-Known Member

    Some games, like Words With Friends, may use your contacts to help you invite your friends to play, some will use your contacts to match with online leaderboards to compare your scores to your friends.

    Games that say they want internet access, especially if they're free, need it for the ads that show up (turn off internet and the ads don't show).
  15. rab1412000

    rab1412000 Active Member

    Just use pdroid or lbe privacy guard to toggle these pesky permissions
  16. silversleeper

    silversleeper Member

    Hello Zombie,

    Thanks for all of the information regarding permissions, but I want to ask you about a few more that you didn't touch on.

    Apps that will take pictures of videos of what you camera see. Does that mean if I have a app that has that permission it will at anytime take pics or videos of what you are doing without your knowledge?

    also

    May make phone calls or texts through my phone without me knowing about it?

    "READ SMS OR MMS
    Allows application to read SMS messages stored on your device or SIM card. Malicious applications may read your confidential messages.
    EDIT SMS OR MMS
    Allows application to write to SMS messages stored on your device or SIM card. Malicious applications may delete your messages.

    DIRECTLY CALL PHONE NUMBERS
    Allows the application to call phone numbers without your intervention. Malicious applications may cause unexpected calls on your phone bill. Note that this does not allow the application to call emergency numbers.
    SEND SMS MESSAGES
    Allows application to send SMS messages. Malicious applications may cost you money by sending messages without your confirmation.

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