People nowadays depend on smartphones in their daily life, whether to check their e-mails, go on social media applications or even pay directly with them. That’s why most of this information is encrypted or it’s done via user discretion. Sometimes though deceptive developers employ backdoors in their seemingly harmless apps to steal user information. That is what GoldenShores Technologies, the developer for Brightest App for Android did to its users, and yes, unfortunately the application had a so-called backdoor in it.
The app transmitted precise user location to third-party advertisers along with a unique device identifier. Thankfully though the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has taken action against the developer who has agreed to settle charges.
“When consumers are given a real, informed choice, they can decide for themselves whether the benefit of a service is worth the information they must share to use it,” said Jessica Rich, director of the FTC bureau of consumer protection, in a statement. The app has over 50 million users.
GoldenShores Technologies will be forced to give a way for users to have more control over how their location and the feature to share it. The strangest part is that the app would have stated the location sharing feature upon installing it. Who would have used such a flashlight application with geo-location sharing features attached to it?