Are Your Apps Ratting You Out?By danseitz
So, you download lots of apps. That’s what smartphones are for, after all; easy, efficient, clear distribution of information with custom software. And, if you’re like anybody else, you didn’t bother reading the Terms of Service, you just blindly clicked yes.
And you may have turned your phone into a rat as a result.
The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday that federal authorities in New Jersey had opened an investigation into some software providers. Allegedly, applications were gathering information like name, age, gender, and even your location illegally and “sharing” them with advertisers.
Veracode decided to test one of the accused applications, Pandora for Android, and the results are…not good. Veracode tore the application down and found five advertisement libraries, most of which offered up information ranging from the invasive (gender) to the ridiculous (altitude? How will THAT have an effect on advertising?)
Veracode is quick to point out that it’s unlikely the people owning the app are aware of what’s going on, as Veracode had to dig pretty deep into these libraries to find anything. They’re just trying to raise money via free apps and advertising. Still, it’s an important reminder: your phone is not necessarily only sending the information you want it to.