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Over 90 percent of cellphone apps request access to private information

Updated: Aug 3,2018 9:35 PM     Xinhua

BEIJING — An internet privacy report said 99.9 percent of cellphone applications within the Android operating system request access to a user’s private information, and the proportion for iOS was 93.8 percent.

The report on internet privacy security and fraud for the first half of 2018 was jointly released by Tencent Research Center and the Data Center of China Internet (DCCI) at a press conference on Aug 3.

“Almost all applications request access to a user’s private information... it is an enduring task to protect the internet users’ privacy,” Hu Yanping, the founder of DCCI, said at the press conference.

Some applications gain the users’ private information by accessing irrelevant services. For example, an online music application might request to use the phone’s camera, said Liu Jie, host of the press conference.

Some 89.9 percent of applications request access to use the camera, and 86.2 percent request access to the microphone and recording device, which users are the most concerned about, according to the report.

Some suggestions to protect private information are given in the report, such as downloading applications from verified sources and cautiously permitting the app to access information about locations, messages, and contacts.

Since the enforcement of the Cybersecurity Law in June 2017, mobile device developers have raised their awareness toward cybersecurity, the report says.

Mobile application developers cannot collect user information that is irrelevant, and they should handle such information in accordance with the laws and user agreements, according to authorities.

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