Alert Africa | Review app permissions before installation
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Review app permissions before installation

 

 

 Cyber Security Tip #6 – Review app permissions before installing an application

Do the permissions requested by the app make sense?

Quick Tips

 Quick Tips 

Read app permissions before accepting or installing the app.

Do the permissions requested by the app make sense? For example, a weather app should not have access to your contact list.

Only install apps from trusted sources (Google Play Store, iTunes Store etc.)

Do not Jail Break (Apple) or Root (Android) your device

Getting Hands On

 

 Before installation 

Read through the permission requests and see if they make sense (i.e. the app requests to access contacts but the app is used to view images)

 

 After installation(Compressed Links) 

Use apps like “App Permissions” to review permissions other apps have.

As you review these permissions, think about what the app does and if the permissions it has fits its use.

Useful Applications.

 Commercial (Android)  

NOTE: Disabling app permissions can cause apps to stop working properly (crash), thus these apps are recommended for use by Advanced users ONLY.

Adv Permission Manager (Pro)

Permission Manager Pro

Permissions Viewer

 Freely Available (Android)   

These apps allow you to see the permissions of the other apps installed on your device. They do not disable any permissions and can be used without worrying that you might break something.

App Permissions

Clueful

Permission Manager – App ops

Why Should I Care?

Clicking on a malicious link could result in you giving out personal information and / or your device getting infected with malware which could result in the following:

 Personal Impact  

Identity & personal information theft.

Social media account breach.

Reputational damage, extortion and blackmail due to hacked accounts.

Your bank accounts can be compromised (Hacked).

Access to email accounts, implicating them as set off points.

Criminals can take pictures of you with your webcam / front camera.

Criminals can make audio and / or video recordings of you and your surroundings using your device.

Criminals can use these recordings and pictures for extortion.

Your credit record can be damaged.

Accounts can be opened in your name without your knowledge.

Your email inbox could be flooded with unwanted emails or used to spam your contacts.

Your email inbox could be flooded with unwanted emails. (Spam)

 

 Children 

Images of you or your family can be harvested without your permission and used on unsavoury websites.

Untrusted people can track the movements of your family from geotags in certain pictures posted on the web.

Untrusted people (e.g. paedophiles) can gather intelligence on your family from various online sources and attempt to contact your children.

 

 Device Security 

Criminals can implicate your device in cybercrime.

Your device can become infected with viruses (malware).

Your device can become very slow and sometimes even unresponsive.

Your data usage will go up, resulting in high telephone bills.

Slow Internet connection, due to the malicious applications sending and receiving data.

 

 Data Security 

There are many incidents that could result in you losing some or all of your valuable data.