Over 3300 Android Apps on Google Play Store Are Improperly Tracking Kids

by Linda Olson April 18, 2018, 0:16
Over 3300 Android Apps on Google Play Store Are Improperly Tracking Kids

Thus, for now, all parents could do is to make sure that their children are using apps safely and logged in carefully.

Research has revealed that the apps were not only collecting phone numbers, emails and location data (5 percent), but they were also sharing sensitive information with third-parties (19 percent) which was specifically forbidden to prevent tracking and behavioral advertising.

The researchers published the study, "Won't Somebody Think of the Children?" However, it is the first time that Palestinians have been targeted with Android spyware all thanks to a fake Facebook page.

We believe that this work illustrates the utility of our automated app analysis testbed which, with further development, will have impact on multiple stakeholders.

"We explained our concerns to Unlockd, outlined how they could fix the problems or use alternatives, and gave them time to make changes". The findings also provide data about the relative number of devices that have a particular screen configuration, defined by a combination of screen size and density, which help developers to better design user interfaces for different screen configurations.

Up to 235 apps were accessing the phone's Global Positioning System data - 184 of which transmitted the device's location to advertisers, according to the study. Unfortunately, they have already been downloaded up to 1,250 times, so there could be users out there carrying some very risky apps. Some of these apps include KidzInMind, TabTale's Pop Girls-High School Band, and Fun Kid Racing.

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The description of the vehicle, a Honda Pilot, matches that of the SUV the Thottapilly family was driving when they vanished. Replying to this message, Sushma Swaraj tweeted: "I am in constant touch with our Consulate in San Francisco".

Apps primarily developed for families and children have to participate in the program.

"The researchers must have stated that they are over 13 while performing these simulations", he said. This implies that the back button will not show up when there is no use for it, like on the Homescreen. It followed the FTC's requirement of "verifiable consent", which meant that developers had to take steps to ensure that people knew what information they were giving up. But they said "as our results show, there appears to not be any (or only limited) enforcement".

Over 1,000 of the apps collected personal information in clear violation of the Google Play Store's terms of service.

We contacted Google for comment but the search giant has yet to respond.

Furthermore, it says Google's efforts to limit tracking by using resettable advertising IDs are largely ineffective.

Almost all of the 1,280 apps (92%) with Facebook tie-ins were not properly using the social network's systems to prevent under-13 use.

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