Tag Archives: spying

Stalkerware – what is this?

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Stalkerware „is a monitoring software or spyware that is used for stalking”.

What does it mean?
That means that everyone can have this kind of app and see what someone else is doing. You can have access to someone’s back and front camera, localization, voice records, and screen.

How does it work? 
The only thing you have to do to have access to someone else’s life is to download the special app from a special website on a victim’s phone. 

As we can see from the graph, the number of stalkerware apps detected by Kaspersky Security has increased by almost half in 7 months.

The biggest number of users of this application was in Russia. In the second place is India and in the third – Brazil. 

According to Kaspersky’s research, the most often detected Stalkerware apps were MobileTool, iSpyoo, and Talklog.

What can show us that we are being spied on?
If you see any unusual activity on your device there might be something going on. Don’t click on any links in order not to be hacked or spied on.

How can we protect ourselves from an unwanted app?
1) Don’t leave your phone without supervision.
In this case, no one could download a spyware app on your device.
2) Don’t use your thumbprints to open your phone or laptop.
The less the technology knows about you, the safer you are.
3) Download security software.
It may help detect unwanted activities and delete it.

 

References:

  • https://www.bbc.com/news/av/technology-50175538/using-stalkerware-to-spy-on-a-colleague-s-phone?intlink_from_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.bbc.com%2Fnews%2Ftechnology&link_location=live-reporting-map
  • https://securelist.com/the-state-of-stalkerware-in-2019/93634/
  • https://securelist.com/beware-of-stalkerware/90264/
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stalkerware
  • https://www.zdnet.com/article/the-ultimate-guide-to-finding-and-killing-spyware-and-stalkerware/

 

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Facebook pays teens to install an app that spies on them

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Once again Facebook finds itself in a position no company should end up in. It was reported that they have been secretly paying teenagers and adults to install a VPN  app that allows them to collect all the data on how they use their smartphones.

“Project Atlas”

It all began in 2016 with the so-called “Facebook Research” app where some of the users were being paid 20$ a month for permission to gather all kinds of data from their device. It enables Facebook to view web searches, location information, private messages on social media apps, and a lot of other activities. What is more, Facebook even asked users to screenshot their Amazon order history page. To mask its involvement in everything, the program is said to be administered through beta testing services like Applause, BetaBound and uTest and is referred to as “Project Atlas.”

Violation of policies

The app was also available on iOS, however, since it can decrypt and analyzy users phone activity it was a violation of Apple policy. After the report on the app, Facebook stated that it would shut down the iOS version of its app. In this case, Apple was quicker and had already blocked the “Facebook Research”  on their system.

“We designed our Enterprise Developer Program solely for the internal distribution of apps within an organization. Facebook has been using their membership to distribute a data-collecting app to consumers, which is a clear breach of their agreement with Apple. Any developer using their enterprise certificates to distribute apps to consumers will have their certificates revoked, which is what we did in this case to protect our users and their data.” – statement from Apple spokesperson

Not a bright future

Facebook has had a rough couple of years now, especially after it was revealed that the data of 87 million users had been improperly shared with political consultancy Cambridge Analytica. It is also scandalous, that ads for this app that ran on Instagram and Snapchat specifically asked for participants to be 13 to 17 years old. Who knows what we will find out in the future, but if you have any thoughts what can also be wrong with Facebook feel free to share it in the comments.

 

Sources:

  1. https://www.marketplace.org/2019/01/30/tech/facebook-has-been-paying-teens-data-what-does-mean-calls-regulate-company
  2. https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/29/facebook-project-atlas/
  3. https://www.vox.com/the-goods/2019/1/30/18203803/facebook-research-vpn-minors-data-access-apple
  4. https://www.theinquirer.net/inquirer/news/3070119/facebook-has-been-paying-teens-for-unfettered-access-to-their-data
  5. https://www.techzim.co.zw/2019/01/facebook-was-paying-teens-20-month-for-all-of-their-data/

 

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