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Study Reveals Scale of Data-Sharing from Android Phones


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The Samsung Galaxy S6, an Android handset.

Said Doug Leith of Trinity College Dublin, "I think we have completely missed the massive and ongoing data collection by our phones, for which there is no opt-out. Weve been too focused on Web cookies and on badly-behaved apps."

Credit: Uswitch

A study by researchers at Ireland's Trinity College Dublin and the U.K.'s University of Edinburgh found that vendor-customized Android variants transmit significant amounts of data from mobile phones to the operating system (OS) developer and third parties with system apps pre-installed on those handsets, like Google, Microsoft, LinkedIn, and Facebook.

The analysis found that users are unable to opt out from this data collection.

Trinity College's Doug Leith said, "We've been too focused on Web cookies and on badly-behaved apps. I hope our work will act as a wake-up call to the public, politicians and regulators. Meaningful action is urgently needed to give people real control over the data that leaves their phones."

From Trinity College Dublin (Ireland)
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