Oxford University study surges privacy concerns among Google Play Store Users

Oxford University’s recent study has revealed that most of the free apps prevailing on Google Play Store share user data with the company. This includes details such as age, gender, location, and details of other apps working on the phone.

The research further adds that 90% of the free apps on the Google Play Store share data with Google parent company Alphabet, Inc. Furthermore, over 40% of apps could transfer info about users to businesses ultimately owned by Facebook.

Oxford University made it clear that the conclusion was made after examining millions of apps on the Google Play Store platform meant for UK and US users.

Reuben Binns, the lead researcher who led the project said that the leaked info could be used to target advertising, credit scoring, or can be used by political parties to know the minds of the people. As such data is highly lucrative for marketing companies; they are even ready to pay thousands of pounds to get hold of info of 10K profiles.

As most of the apps are being offered for free to users, they tend to make money from advertising which makes data sharing go out of control.

Meanwhile, Google says that the latest research looks disputed and mischaracterized. It says that normal functioning of apps such as reporting back when they crash and analytics are being misinterpreted as ‘data sharing’ by the Oxford University researchers.

Additionally, the internet juggernaut says that certain info from the apps such as user interaction with the app, app behavior, what data is being collected by the app are being monitored by Google in order to keep a control on the app creators.

Naveen Goud
Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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