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Google Locks Down Excessive Android App Permissions


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It's about time, but for many it is too little too late. We have one Android phone left and no other OS' but Windows here now including 1 WP8.1 phone. For security not fan following. My Windows phone is not a target of anyone, we have what Apple once had, security by obscurity. But my bitter half still uses it. So this is not anti Android, just that it may be getting better.

 

Excerpt:

 

"Excessive mobile application permissions have long been a security and privacy concern, in particular for Android users who download apps for the platform from a number of sources, and not just from Google. The most notorious case is likely Goldenshores Technologies LLC, which agreed to settle charges with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission that it deceived consumers who downloaded its Android flashlight application that requested an inordinate amount of permissions, including geolocation, which was shared with advertising networks.

 

Today at its annual I/O event, Google announced a new system coming to Android that brings the platform closer to Apple’s way of doing business. The system will enable users to download apps with zero permissions granted, and then during the course of normal usage, users will be prompted by the app if they want to extend any number of permissions.

 

In the past, mobile apps have overreached, looking for access to contact lists, SMS messaging, built-in cameras and microphones, images and more. Malicious apps, meanwhile, can take advantage of this environment, for example, to send premium SMS messages at great cost to the user and great profit for the criminal. Permissions are generally granted en masse during download, and generally consumers who aren’t as security savvy, will agree to whatever conditions they’re presented so long as they can download their app quickly. To illustrate, the U.K.’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) last September published a report that examined 1,200 popular apps and the permissions they seek. Most apps (85 percent), the study concluded, do not explain in clear language to users what information is collected, how it’s collected, nor how it’s used and disclosed; the availability of a privacy policy is also dubious in most cases, the ICO said.

 

See more at: https://threatpost.com/google-locks-down-excessive-android-app-permissions/113051#sthash.pvh9FrSn.dpuf

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