Smartphone apps: Is your privacy protected?

Smartphone apps: Is your privacy protected?

It’s quite difficult to imagine to spend one day without using our smartphones and switching from one App to another. In fact, a recent study shows that the average smartphone user has at least 26 apps installed from chatting apps, recipes, gaming, social networking, or even educational apps. While using these apps excessively, most of us just accept all the terms and permissions without giving them a second thought or even think about how they can affect our privacy and security.

Smartphone apps: Is your privacy protected?

Such reckless attitude can really jeopardize users’ privacy. In fact, there are countless dangers associated with mobile apps that most users usually don’t even consider. For instance, some applications tend to request access to data that just don’t relate to the nature or the purpose of the app. Creepy Huh? Well, almost no user notices it at all!

A report done by Appthority recently shows that more than 80% of top 100 free and paid Android apps and 91% iOS apps come with at least one unsafe trait.

Therefore, it is crucial to educate yourself and understand some of the common yet biggest dangers associated with mobile apps to protect your privacy from any breaches.

  • Unnecessary location tracking:

It’s perfectly normal when an application that is designed to help us navigate destinations efficiently or even show nearby landmarks requires access to your device’s GPS. But what’s not normal or accepted, is when an education or a fitness app require access to your location. You should just ask yourself a simple question: why would they want to know my exact location? The answer is, they are simply looking to spam the app with countless location-specific ads.

To make it even worse, most of the apps we usually download don’t even provide an opt-out option from location tracking. So, if any of the apps you’re currently using requires access to your device’s GPS while there is absolutely no need for it, it’s probably time to wipe it from your device.

  • Lack of Two- Factor Authentication:

Linking all your apps to the same account to make it easier and access with a single tap can be a great thing, but have you ever thought if the credentials of your personal account get compromised? Well, you should really think about it because if that happens, every app you linked to that account is at a huge risk of a serious privacy breach.

In addition, it’s quite impossible to rely on passwords alone. In fact, a chocking statistics revealed that more than 85% of passwords can be cracked within 6 hours. What’s more disturbing is the fact that 65% of users use a single password for all their accounts, including their social media accounts, emails, applications, etc.

Therefore, the two-factor authentication can really help users limit access to their personal data. Unfortunately, this feature doesn’t come by default in every application, making some applications pretty risky to use.

  • No Encryption at all:

Mobile apps are not only used for chatting or gaming, most of us use apps to shop online and even make money transactions online. However, sensitive information such as your bank account credentials can’t just be exposed to the whole world with no protection whatsoever right?

Well, unfortunately a large number of apps that we use to make these sensitive activities don’t provide any encryption at all, and to make it even worse, you wouldn’t even know if your app is leaking your sensitive data or not.

Therefore, you should never rely on this apps to provide you full encryption. Instead, you can simply use a VPN that provides the most advanced encryption protocols such as VPN.Express to protect your information and maintain your online privacy.

Remember, your online privacy is totally worth taking your time to read all terms and conditions before installing any application on your device.

Be safe. Be free.