Apps invading your privacy

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - There's a new resource that can help you compare the apps you put on your devices and see which are best at protecting your privacy.

WBTV Cyber Expert Theresa Payton says a new study looked at over 1 million apps. It was an effort between Carnegie Mellon and the Federal Trade commission. They found that some of the fun games like a Fruit Ninja or Angry birds were some of the bigger offenders while Facebook and some Google apps actually did a better job guarding your privacy. Payton says the researchers at Carnegie Mellon did this by looking at the 3rd party libraries that the apps used in addition to how the app worked.

Theresa Payton's advice follows:

How the database works:

1. They assigned grades based on the gap between people's expectations of an app's privacy and the app's actual privacy.

2. For example, many people did not expect games like Fruit Ninja or Angry Birds to use location data, but many of the game apps do use location.

Since this is a surprise to many, the games that do this get lower marks.

3. During the study, the researchers talked to App developers, and since many App developers use free plug ins, they don't even realize how much their App gives away to marketing companies.

What you can do:

1. Assume you are always for sale

2. Read the privacy policy on the app

3. Check out CATSMI.CA or the new Privacy Grade database at


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