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Thing 4

2016-10-04-14-30-37
The readout from a search for app permissions on my phone (Privacy Cleaner)

Thing 4 requires you to consider the data you share with the apps on your mobile and tablet devices.

I was encouraged to download an app and then have a look through the list of permissions each of my apps have.

Some want to know your exact GPS location, which is understandable for apps such as Google Maps and even Just Eat.

What I don’t understand, is why apps like Outlook or Matalan or Wikipedia need this private information. I imagine it is to do with marketing or metrics, but still, being forced to allow big name apps to see where you are is a bit of a concern. It is does remove your freedom as a consumer – you are not allowed to have control of what they see if you want their app.

I’ve always minimized the use of apps that are not completely ad reliant. This means that I can be more assured that they are using the data I am being forced to provide them with for satisfactory and innocent purposes.

On reflection, I am not sure Thing 4 showed me anything I did not already know, but it did throw a spot light on a particular area of concern I’ve always had.

As people are becoming more and more uneasy with the Big Brother type surveillance these sorts of apps provide, there may come a time were we the consumer are given more control over who can see what.

Cat x

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