apps

Tue
20
Sep
John Lister's picture

Phone Cleaner and Security Apps Were Scams

Two more applications have been removed from the Google Play Store after turning out to be a front for malware. As always in such cases, users who already have the apps installed need to uninstall them as this won't happen automatically. The apps in ... question are called Mister Phone Cleaner and Kylhavy Mobile Security. They had 50,000 and 10,000 downloads respectively before Google pulled the listings. The scam in these cases has a couple of key differences from the familiar story of scammers disguising malware as legitimate apps and finding a way to bypass Google's security checks. That ... (view more)

Thu
18
Aug
John Lister's picture

Netflix Wins Small Victory Over Apple

The iOS Netflix app now has a subscribe button. It's a small change that could make a big difference to Apple's bottom line, as well as opening up legal challenges. Since 2018, Netflix has not offered any way to subscribe through its iPhone and iPad ... app. Instead, users had to sign up on the website, then install the app and sign in. That wasn't a case of Netflix being deliberately awkward but rather not wanting to pay a commission to Apple, which demands a 30 percent cut of any subscriptions made through an app, falling to 15 percent after the first year. Companies like Netflix which refused ... (view more)

Thu
04
Aug
John Lister's picture

New Android Malware Discovered

Some Google Play Store apps with more than a million downloads have turned out to house malware. It's a reminder that however good Google's security vetting process is, it's not perfectly reliable. Two security companies, ThreatLabZ and Evina, say ... they found a total of 60 apps that are or have been in the Play Store and house one of four "families" of malware. One type appears to be new and has been dubbed Autolycos by researcher Maxime Ingrao. Promoted via Facebook and Instagram ads, the apps use a common technique. They are listed as carrying out a specific feature, which they ... (view more)

Tue
01
Mar
John Lister's picture

Windows 11 New Features Revealed

Details of the first major update to Windows 11 are coming to light through testing programs. It's mainly about adding features that were expected but missing from the original release, some of which will be more welcome than others. Despite the ... release of a new edition of Windows (rather than version 10 getting updated forever), Microsoft is sticking to its strategy of infrequent updates rather than constant tinkering. It's reportedly only going to add new features in bulk once a year, with the first such update expected this summer. We're now at the point where the earliest of those ... (view more)

Wed
15
Dec
John Lister's picture

Android Scammers Try New Tactics

Google has cracked down on a key method that scammers used to distribute Android malware through the Play app store. But like a game of whack-a-mole, the scammers are adjusting their tactics for greater success. The Google change is to the way it ... handles accessibility tools on Android devices. These include screen-readers, voice input systems and other modifications for users to interact with the device. Such tools often need access to key components such as the camera, microphone or speakers, access that can be abused by malware. Google relaxes the security and permissions system on such ... (view more)

Wed
01
Dec
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Android 12 Brings Incredibly Useful Privacy Tools

The latest version of Android adds several new privacy features. However, users may need to make some manual tweaks to take full advantage. The changes come in Android 12 which is rolling out to newer phones at the moment. Older models will either ... get it later on or will never be able to get it, depending on the manufacturer. The biggest change is more information about the permissions system. That's the set-up by which users don't have to give an app complete access to the hardware and software on their system. Instead they can individually grant or restrict individual permissions, each of ... (view more)

Tue
07
Sep
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Apple Offers Settlement in App Store Dispute

Apple has agreed to allow app developers to tell users how to save money on app payments. It's part of a settlement in a long-running dispute but it's not enough to satisfy some developers. At the moment, app developers who sell apps in the official ... Apple store can gather email addresses of customers. However, the developers are not allowed to use those addresses to tell customers about how to pay them directly for subscriptions and one-off payments relating to the app. In-App Messages Banned That's a blow to developers who use a "freemium" model where the app itself is free but ... (view more)

Thu
08
Jul
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Nine Rogue Android Apps to Delete Right Now

Nine popular Google Play apps were actually scams to steal Facebook logins according to a security company. Although Google has removed some of them, they may still be on devices. All the apps were promoted as performing a simple task and appear to ... have worked as designed. Although that meant more effort for the developers, the idea was to make users less suspecting that the apps were actually harmful. The affected apps had the following names and functions: App Lock Keep (child safety tool) App Lock Manager (child safety tool) Horoscope Daily (astrology) Horoscope Pi (astrology) Inwell ... (view more)

Wed
02
Jun
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Google Accused of Hiding Tracking Settings

Internal Google documents suggest the company intentionally made it harder for users to stop it accessing their location data. The documents have become public through a lawsuit that claims Google broke data consent rules. The state of Arizona is ... suing over the way Google handles location tracking. Officials say that even when users switched off location tracking for specific apps, Google continued tracking in the background. It only stopped when users switched off a tracking setting for the entire Android system. That's led to the lawsuit, based on the logic that Google made profits from ... (view more)

Thu
13
May
John Lister's picture

88% of iOS Users Reject Online Tracking

Just one in eight iPhone and iPad users have agreed to let an app track them online. They've been able to make the decision since Apple changed its rules, to the dismay of advertisers. The change is to the way iOS handles a tag known as Identifier ... for Advertisers (IDFA). It identifies an individual device and allows advertisers to piece together information from multiple sources and activities. While advertisers argue this allows for better targeted and thus more relevant (and less annoying) ads, users and privacy groups have objected to what they see as surveillance and snooping. The change ... (view more)

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