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The Top Ten Mobile Flashlight Applications Are Spying On You. Did You Know?

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posted on Oct, 25 2014 @ 11:18 PM
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If this is not the appropriate forum, mods please move accordingly.
Did a quick ref check on this and it looks to be solid.
I don't use the FL apps but a lot of people have them due to either free download or updates to phone software.
I'm not sure which if not all have this security issue but its worth the look to see.

Cyber security expert speaking about the issues and discussing a handful of the apps and where they are found.
www.youtube.com...



Below is a quote from Cyber Def Mag. Link is at the bottom.



Everyone wants a flashlight app on their phone. Finding your keys, searching for something you lost, looking for the light switch in a hotel room? What a great utility, right? Wrong! The top 10 free flashlight apps in the Google Play store alone account for nearly 1/2 BILLION INSTALLATIONS are all spying on users with an application size ranging from of 1.2 to 5 megabytes. In fact, an optimized flashlight application should only be 72k which is 10-50 times smaller than the smallest one of these apps. So, why so big? The size is significant because there’s a lot more code than necessary embedded in these applications which allows them to eavesdrop on you. Nothing in life is free. These flashlight apps do some very strange things – geolocate you, read your contacts list, read your device storage looking for personal, sensitive pictures and videos, read and write files, check to see what apps are running, look for ways to communicate over the internet (wifi or cellular), get your phone number and so much more that SnoopWall considers all of them well designed MALWARE. All of them!!!


www.cyberdefensemagazine.com...
edit on 10/25/2014 by TheSilverGate because: edited typo from quote




posted on Oct, 25 2014 @ 11:20 PM
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Why yes I did in fact know that, mainly due to the thread earlier in the week on it.


Did a quick search for "flashlight apps" and found this

Flashlight app thread
edit on 10 25 2014 by caterpillage because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 25 2014 @ 11:22 PM
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a reply to: caterpillage

did a search didnt find anything on it except this from April.

www.abovetopsecret.com...



posted on Oct, 25 2014 @ 11:23 PM
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originally posted by: TheSilverGate
a reply to: caterpillage

did a search didnt find anything on it except this from April.

www.abovetopsecret.com...


I amended my post with a link.



posted on Oct, 25 2014 @ 11:25 PM
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a reply to: caterpillage

lol and so it is the same. thank you. mods please close.



posted on Oct, 25 2014 @ 11:28 PM
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originally posted by: TheSilverGate
a reply to: caterpillage

lol and so it is the same. thank you. mods please close.


If it's any consolation to you, your op was better than the first one.



posted on Oct, 25 2014 @ 11:52 PM
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don't care if this was posted before - flag anyway, this is important.



posted on Oct, 26 2014 @ 12:10 AM
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Any of these free apps and even free web services, such as Weather Bug -noted for such in the past-back are heavily traced to malware and other methods of tracking. Going as far to say, while observing information from those concerned, for example, an anti virus software(Hackshield) that runs in the background of online games has also backdoors for privacy invasion.



posted on Oct, 26 2014 @ 12:19 AM
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a reply to: dreamingawake

It would probably make our jaws drop to know the true extent of it. Seems the whole world has become one big invasion of privacy



posted on Oct, 26 2014 @ 05:42 AM
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I posted this in the other topic but my Magnifying glass wanted WiFi access as well as GPS, and others. It is not just flashlight that you have to watch



posted on Oct, 26 2014 @ 05:49 AM
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If you suspect malware, flag it so google knows about it. They will actively remove malware from the Play Store if they know about.

They do not really police what is put on the Play Store, however, and it's up to you to read the permissions requested and use your best judgment.



posted on Oct, 26 2014 @ 07:46 AM
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a reply to: TheSilverGate

I did a thread on this topic several months ago. I suggest that you forget searching and eliminating the "top ten" and assume that they all steal data from your phone. You wanna stop it? Delete any such freebe program and then carefully read the agreement on any new download. It's not just flashlights. Do the same check with free compasses or a stylized clock, anything is likely to have hidden reasons why it is presented to you as free. Think of it as exactly how free downloads from other than manufacturer's site operation on the internet. You get one thing and a few others that you didn't notice to avoid or didn't even present themselves when you click to accept the otherwise free app program.

This sneaky business is what happens when we didn't protest loud and long enough when "cookies" started being introduced to out computers a couple of decades ago. Since then, we have learned why the government took no firm action to prevent such surveillance. It was deeply involved in doing exactly the same thing.



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