The Smartphone Does Not Listen to You, but it Probably Records Video

Smartphone Secret Video Recording
Written by Hassan Abbas

The researchers conducted an experiment in which they discovered that some applications secretly record and send video.

You watch another new video on your favorite YouTube channel with a cup of hot tea and croissants (let’s say) and do not even notice how the phrase you said suddenly turns into a contextual advertisement on Facebook. Some conspiracy theory is obtained, in which a large number of people willingly began to believe. However, according to researchers from the Northeastern University of Boston (USA), this is a myth. During the year they tried to obtain evidence of listening to users, but they did not find anything. But found out another thing – mobile applications can watch you, and that’s a fact.

Smartphone Secret Video Recording

According to the resource Gizmodo, during a large experiment, a group of researchers tested more than 17 thousand popular Android-applications. Almost half of them could send information to Facebook, and also accessed the camera and microphone of the device. To interact with each of these applications, researchers used 10 smartphones and a special program. Then they analyzed all the traffic and did not find any audio records sent to third-party servers,

Experts do not undertake to state that their experiment is 100% reliable, on the contrary, they note that in practice users may encounter completely different results because their automated system could not be authorized in applications and did not take into account the sound processed locally on the device.

Nevertheless, during the experiment, the researchers discovered the suspicious behavior of some applications that, in secret from users, activated the camera, recorded video and took screenshots. Then these files were transferred to a third-party server.

One such application is called GoPuff – it’s a mobile client of the same delivery service, which periodically records short videos and sends them to the website of the analytical company Appsee. The application also unauthorizedly takes screenshots when the user fills in an address for delivery. The most interesting is that when GoPuff developers were notified about this, they immediately updated their privacy policy. Google, as is known, requires that users provide information about what personal data the application uses, but apparently, many do not.

Also See: Yandex Issued in Search Documents Google Docs with Personal Data

Thus, in an attempt to dispel one conspiracy theory, the researchers accidentally created another.

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About the author

Hassan Abbas

Tech enthusiast with too many items on his wish-list and not nearly enough money! Specializing in all things tech, with a slight Apple bent he has been writing for various blogs for the best part of (too many) years

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