Android apps secretly listen to your viewed TV commercials 

234 Android apps have been identified as using your phone to monitor TV advertising effectiveness:

The apps silently listen for ultrasonic sounds that marketers use as high-tech beacons to indicate when a phone user is viewing a TV commercial or other type of targeted audio. A representative sample of just five of the 234 apps have been downloaded from 2.25 million to 11.1 million times, according to the researchers, citing official Google Play figures. None of them discloses the tracking capabilities in their privacy policies.

Source: More Android phones than ever are covertly listening for inaudible sounds in ads | Ars Technica

Google spies on you, recording your voice when you are not expecting it to

CCTV surveillance monitoring

Android devices have an “Ok, Google” voice activation feature. This enables voice input of search and other functions on your Android device.

Google also records a copy of the audio when it does this. Google also occasionally records incidental audio having nothing to do with a search. It certainly has for me.

You can manually delete the records, one by one, which is very time consuming. You need to go to this Google page and log in, and then click on Manage Activity and go through Google’s cloud-based storage of your conversations in the past.

Google also records your location as you travel about, and even identifies what businesses or properties you have entered. Google’s Chrome logs every web site and page you visit in to the Google cloud.

In the past couple of weeks, Microsoft has come under fire for its Windows 10 keystroke logger, that when enabled, records you keystrokes and sends those to Microsoft. That means account names, passwords, personal search requests (even if using Tor) and so forth. You can disable their keystroke spying logger by going to Settings | Privacy and switch off the item labeled “Send Microsoft info about how I write to help us improve typing and writing in the future”.

Whenever someone else wants your personal data, you need to ask:

  • who has access to this data?
  • how will this data be stored securely?
  • how long will this data be stored?
  • how will the data being disposed of when it is no longer being stored?

If you do not know the answer to those questions, then you must be leery of donating your personal data to others. This also applies to non-computer world. When you are asked to fill out a paper form with lots of personal data, say to make a credit purchase, you should ask them how they will use the data, keep it secure, and how will they dispose of it?

Similarly, Microsoft’s docs.com web site for publishing and sharing your files makes all files public, by default. The result is that the docs.com search function readily unearths a lot of private data files that users probably do not even realize are posted online. These include school transcripts, medical records, passwords, credit card and other account data, banking statements and more.

THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF THE INTERNET IS TO SPY ON EVERYONE.

 

 

Apple gets 91% of global smart phone profits

“Apple raked in 91% of of the $9.4 billion profits the global smartphone market generated in the third quarter, according to Strategy Analytics.”

Source: Apple claims 91% of worldwide smartphone profits in Q3: Report | FierceWireless

Astounding. Apple phones are not the dominant product, but Apple manages to collect most of the industry profits.

How to save your Instagram photos and then delete your account

In light of Instagram’s new policy to license out user’s photos for ads, without specific permission or compensation, users are canceling their Instagram accounts in droves: Oh My Tech!: How to delete your Instagram account | The Salt Lake Tribune.

Many are switching to the Flickr.com, which now includes an iPhone photo sharing app.

Update: Instagram co-founder wrote a blog post suggesting they messed up their new terms of service and will make unspecified changes.

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Half of all app revenue goes to just 25 developers

And 24 of the 25 are game companies: Half of all app store revenue goes to just 25 developers • The Register.

And about half of the top 300 apps are games.

Canalys says small developers – and makers of non-game apps in particular – should explore as many marketing avenues as they can come up with, including discounts, brand tie-ins, social media promotion, and in-app advertising.