Google removes vital privacy feature from Android

GRtak

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Google removes vital privacy feature from Android, Claiming Its Release Was Accidental


Snip

Yesterday, we published a blog post lauding an extremely important app privacy feature that was added in Android 4.3. That feature allows users to install apps while preventing the app from collecting sensitive data like the user's location or address book.

The App Ops interface removed in Android 4.4.2
After we published the post, several people contacted us to say that the feature had actually been removed in Android 4.4.2, which was released earlier this week. Today, we installed that update to our test device, and can confirm that the App Ops privacy feature that we were excited about yesterday is in fact now gone.

I was going to try and get this for the tablet but got busy doing other things. I really find this disappointing and I am delaying getting the phone I was getting meself for Xmas. I want some control of my data and location info, and I will not pay for others to take it.
 

maxtortheone

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Can't you just turn location services off in the settings menu?
 

GRtak

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It is more than the locations service that is a problem. Why does any ap not directly involved with your phonecalls, able to see when and who you call as well as the contact list? That is nobodies business beyond the person doing the calling.
 

mpicco

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It's well known that for any new little comforts we get lately we surrender a little more of our privacy... it's been known for a century.

In any case, sometimes I'm glad to live in a pretty technologically retarded country.
 

GRtak

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So we should willfully surrender our privacy for a bit of convenience? And most people don't understand what they are giving up, and if they knew, they would not do it.
 

mpicco

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I'm pretty sure you hardware over there already accounts for the monetary value of your private information being sent all over the place, specially advertisers. Do you really think a high end smartphone coming nearly free with a certain payment plan is really free? How come in Europe we pay close to a thousand dollars for the same hardware?
 

GRtak

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They aren't free, the price is built into the plan payments. That is why it costs you extra if you end the contract early. But you think it is different amount of data that they look at in Europe? I doubt it.
 

mpicco

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Don't doubt it. Google's advertising is highly geared towards America, it understands America, and works best in America, and specially in english. I know cos I've dealt with advertising, SEO, AdSense etc.

Other than that as I said, I have little to worry about the "portuguese intelligence" knowing my family's phone numbers... I doubt they can tell what's the difference between an Android phone and a pebble.
 

GRtak

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This is not a government issue, this is about what corporations should be able to see and do with our info.
 

jmb

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