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Giving Android Apps Too Much Permission?

Like all Mobile apps on different platforms, Android Apps also ask you for certain permissions.

Text messaging apps need the permission to be able to read your text messages. Similarly, a game needs permission to make sure your screen never dims or turns off during inactivity.

However, with the sudden surge in Android popularity all over the world, more than a billion Android apps are out there, fighting for your attention and money.

Since it’s so easy to install an app, you may not be paying attention to the security permissions your apps are asking of you.

That’s scary, and can lead to the worst possible outcomes.

Android Apps and Too Many Permissions?

Here is an interesting Infographic highlighting the issue. Some great (and some shocking) takeaways from this:

  1. Great! Android Apps can ask for up to 124 different types of permissions! This means the Android platform wants to give you more control over your apps.
  2. Shocking! 33% of all Android apps ask for more permissions than needed. This could include things like the Scrabble game asking for permission to read your phone book contacts.
  3. Shocking! 83% of Android users don’t pay attention to permissions when installing an app. Imagine how easy it is for any malware app to get through!
  4. Shocking! 42% of Android users don’t know what “permissions” are or what they mean. Everyone installing or using any App should understand what permissions means and why they’re there. It’s like having a home security, but not understanding how it works or if it’s even activated.
  5. Great and Shocking! 218 million US users alone access the Internet or email via their smartphone. While this large number is good, this also means more people are at risk because they don’t understand why they should or how they can secure their devices.

Here are the full details:

Android Apps and Permissions - by McAfee

Android Apps and Permissions – by McAfee

What do you think?

How many apps do you have on your phone? Do you read every permission request info before granting it to an app? Let us know what you think in the comments below. You can also use Hotspot Shield to protect yourself from malware apps.

Remember: the next time an app asks for permissions, do some research. Your text message program or car racing game most probably doesn’t need the permission to read your emails or get access to your call history.

One Response to Giving Android Apps Too Much Permission?

  1. Fidler July 26, 2013 at 2:08 am #

    I wanted to install Hotspot Shield VPN on my Android device.
    When I quickly browsed the access rights it asks for I asked myself “Why does this app need access to my call logs, contacts, call information?”.
    I googled it and it gave me this page…. Irony ?

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