The typical user has very little control over security and privacy settings of mobile devices. Many users are drawn to jailbreaking their devices so that they can manipulate tightly restricted and locked-down mobile operating systems. This comes at the cost of voiding device warranties.
One US company, Flurry Analytics, tracks 1.4 billion app sessions a day from more than 600 million smartphones and tablets. It offers more than 70,000 companies the chance to ”identify your best segments by demographics, interest, geography, usage and more”.
US-based researcher and consultant Ashkan Soltani said people are most valuable to advertisers when they have a baby, a house or a spouse. –SMH
I recently signed up for beta testing a new privacy tool; Mobilescope [a limited beta], and currently am awaiting the invite. The idea behind Mobilescope is to monitor your mobile apps and what they do behind your back. According to GCN, Mobilescope will tell you what type of data leaves your phone and which apps are responsible for the traffic.
MobileScope looks like a great tool for monitoring and controlling what information third parties get from your smart phone apps:
We built MobileScope as a proof-of-concept tool that automates much of what we were doing manually; monitoring mobile devices for surprising traffic and highlighting potentially privacy-revealing flows. –Schneier on Security
Remember earlier this year when Path apologized for uploading user’s entire iPhone address book without user permission? With a tool like Mobilescope – we would quickly become aware of what mobile apps are doing behind our back.