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IN Science & Technology ON 18 Oct, 2015
We all are accustomed to the trend that has taken over the world of downloading apps that ease our life in their own way, even if it's as small as reminding us of appointments. Well, this use isn't that small, but you got the hint didn't you?
A flashlight is an app that is a must-have for your iPhone or Android smartphone. This flashlight app you have so innocently installed for helping you to shed light on certain dark situations might be doing much more than that. It is spying on you, and we'll tell you how.
You must be thinking that why are we criticizing such a great utility. Well, have your flashlight app asked your permission for access to your photos, contacts and other personal data? Did you just answer in a yes? Here is a simple thought, what will a Flashlight app do with your contacts and personal data?
Gary Miliefsky from a cyber security firm, Snoopbit, says that ''We've all become victims of installing many apps on our smartphones and tablets that do much more than the service they should provide. We have opened a Pandora's Box to online predators, cyber criminals and spies - all through these apps we foolishly trust."
The top ten flashlight apps on google store have been downloaded more than half a billion times having varied sizes from 1.2 to 5 megabytes when the amount of space they require is just 72k. So, why are they so big? Because the code embedded in them is much more than required facilitating the cyber criminals to peep into your phone's sensitive data easily.
The experts warn regarding the app, "Some appear specifically designed to collect and expose your personal information to cybercriminals or other nation states. In addition, you are at significant risk if you are doing Mobile Banking on the same device as one of these free Flashlight Apps." So here's our advice, uninstall them right now.