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11-18-2017 07:05 AM
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  1. Snoops8's Avatar
    True that they aren't spying to give your data away to some third party. False that they aren't spying to try and use your data to make money from advertisers that they shove at you.

    I don't want to be an ad sponge. I also don't want Google/Alphabet milking my activities for their own profit with the only benefit to me being that I pay $ for entry to begin with. Sure Android is "free" on paper but just having the code doesn't get you anything but some lines of code. You have to pay for the hardware and network to run it on.


    I'll start a club. People pay me to join and I'll have someone follow them around so I can sell their anonymized activities to whomever wants to buy them and get super rich doing it. Sounds great, don't it?

    There's a very good reason this gets asked about regularly that has nothing to do with paranoia. It's called not wanting to feel used and degraded into a commodity. Too many people just shrug their shoulders and accept it as "there's really no getting around it." For others it really sticks in their craw.

    Yes, these companies are all mining data. But how and why is important; as is what they do with the resultant info. So let's nip the "But (insert X) tracks your data too" straw man argument in the bud. We aren't discussing anyone except Google in here.

    I think you need a different outlook on things, so we clearly agree to disagree. You think I should just bend over and smile as they shove it in and I say no way, Jose.
    I agree 100%. The amount of data google collects is staggering, and besides google has already shown itself to be irresponsible with the power it already has by abusing its monopoly.

    If you use google services, then google knows your phone calls, texts, location, wifi spots, work place, house, shopping habits, websites you visit, apps you buy, how much time you spend per app, when you're awake, what you search for, what videos you watch...even the content of your phone calls if you use google voice...pretty much every facet of your life. And to take all that information and just sell it to others for a profit is just disgusting.

    And just for the record, this data is not anonymous and is hackable. I remember reading articles about how google engineers have been in trouble for doing things like reading emails, going through chat transcriptions and stalking kids.

    Edit: As an example for the last paragraph, I looked up the name of one such individual who got caught, his name was 'David Barksdale'
    Last edited by Snoops8; 11-16-2017 at 01:06 AM.
    nate0, RumoredNow and a5cent like this.
    11-16-2017 12:44 AM
  2. Snoops8's Avatar
    If you're using Microsoft's services, you may as well be using Google's. There isn't an important difference between the privacy of each. If anything, Google has seemed less willing to give out info to court orders, whereas Microsoft allegedly gives almost no pushback. The safest place to be is on iOS and macOS, which are famously private and secure, especially if you don't use iCloud for anything you wouldn't want to be made public.

    Also check out Telegram Messenger.
    Microsoft has been pretty aggressive, and has filed lawsuit and lawsuit against the US for privacy laws, alongside Apple and probably Google too. However, in contrast to Microsoft, Google collects significantly more information from many more sources, such as emails (or at least used to) and other information you'd want to be private, whereas Microsoft has drawn a line in the sand and won't ever collect certain data. So while they both collect data, the amount of data collected, the degree to which it's collected, and the way it's used is different for both companies.

    As an example, I'm okay with Microsoft knowing my computer specs to diagnose why my computer crashed. I'm not okay with Google knowing the content of my email or what videos I watch so they can be given to advertisers. Yes, both companies cater to marketers to some extent, but google gives them a much more nuanced view.

    As for security, google also does a terrible job of securing android yet also loves to publish weaknesses in Windows all the time.
    nate0, a5cent, RumoredNow and 1 others like this.
    11-16-2017 01:04 AM
  3. a5cent's Avatar
    The majority of sec holes are from third party app stores. And hence the reason one should use Google mobile services and not third party ROMs that many people talk about on this forum.
    This is incorrect. The largest security hole, which is breached thousands of times more often than the next class of security issue, is the user.

    Ironically, two of the least secure OSes, Android and Win32, are the ones who gained widespread popularity. Unlike iOS or UWP, neither Win32 nor Android are secure by design and require a slew of tacked on functionality which attempt to make up for their security weaknesses... only somewhat successfully.

    When an attack is successful, Android and Win32 also have little to no mechanisms by which to contain the damage. You mentioned Android's dalvik (VM), but that is almost irrelevant in this regard, as security isn't its focus. The Android sandbox is more about protecting the app than it is about protecting the system from apps... that's a completely different approach from iOS or UWP.

    My main point is this:

    There are differences between these OSes.

    Many consumers tend to reduce the issue to "if it's widely targeted it's less secure", likely because (a) that makes sense without us having to understand anything about OS design and security and (b) the lack of attempts is how Apple was able to brainwash people into thinking OSX was secure (about a decade ago?) despite it being one of the least secure OSes out at the time.

    where are the articles that state people are losing thier banking information on Android?
    If you only hang out at places like mobilenations (strictly consumer oriented and barely technical), you'll rarely see such articles. Most reports are either:
    • too complicated and/or not publicly available (publications written by security researchers)
    • not spectacular enough, i.e. it doesn't generate enough clicks (e.g. affects only a few hundred people)
    • not unique enough, i.e it doesn't generate enough clicks (it happens every day, which means it's commonplace, i.e. it's not news and only of interest to those affected or who are paid to solve the problem)
    • not relevant to western media (only affects people with AOSP devices, primarily in Asia or the Ex-Soviet Union).

    Still, it is possible to find non-technical reports, but you must look for them. They aren't served to you automatically on consumer websites like this. These are just a few examples, limited to the topic you specified (banking), 2017, and English:

    https://clientsidedetection.com/marcher.html
    https://thehackernews.com/2017/08/an...ng-trojan.html
    Russia Hacking: Bank Customers Hit By Malware in Android Phones | Fortune
    https://blog.vasco.com/application-s...re-protection/

    The security industry agrees that attacking iOS devices would actually be the more profitable criminal endeavor. The main reason it's much rarer is not because of market-share, but because it's much harder to pull off.

    I'm bailing out again at this point since security and privacy are only tangentially related, so it's a bit off topic.
    Last edited by a5cent; 11-16-2017 at 08:30 AM. Reason: spelling
    RumoredNow likes this.
    11-16-2017 07:17 AM
  4. Wolfjt's Avatar
    This is incorrect. The largest security hole, which is breached thousands of times more often than the next class of security issue, is the user.

    Ironically, two of the least secure OSes, Android and Win32, are the ones who gained widespread popularity. Unlike iOS or UWP, neither Win32 nor Android are secure by design and require a slew of tacked on functionality which attempt to make up for their security weaknesses... only somewhat successfully.

    When an attack is successful, Android and Win32 also have little to no mechanisms by which to contain the damage. You mentioned Android's dalvik (VM), but that is almost irrelevant in this regard, as security isn't its focus. The Android sandbox is more about protecting the app than it is about protecting the system from apps... that's a completely different approach from iOS or UWP.

    My main point is this:

    There are differences between these OSes.

    Many consumers tend to reduce the issue to "if it's widely targeted it's less secure", likely because (a) that makes sense without us having to understand anything about OS design and security and (b) the lack of attempts is how Apple was able to brainwash people into thinking OSX was secure (about a decade ago?) despite it being one of the least secure OSes out at the time.



    If you only hang out at places like mobilenations (strictly consumer oriented and barely technical), you'll rarely see such articles. Most reports are either:
    • too complicated and/or not publicly available (publications written by security researchers)
    • not spectacular enough, i.e. it doesn't generate enough clicks (e.g. affects only a few hundred people)
    • not unique enough, i.e it doesn't generate enough clicks (it happens every day, which means it's commonplace, i.e. it's not news and only of interest to those affected or who are paid to solve the problem)
    • not relevant to western media (only affects people with AOSP devices, primarily in Asia or the Ex-Soviet Union).

    Still, it is possible to find non-technical reports, but you must look for them. They aren't served to you automatically on consumer websites like this. These are just a few examples, limited to the topic you specified (banking), 2017, and English:

    https://clientsidedetection.com/marcher.html
    https://thehackernews.com/2017/08/an...ng-trojan.html
    Russia Hacking: Bank Customers Hit By Malware in Android Phones | Fortune
    https://blog.vasco.com/application-s...re-protection/

    The security industry agrees that attacking iOS devices would actually be the more profitable criminal endeavor. The main reason it's much rarer is not because of market-share, but because it's much harder to pull off.

    I'm bailing out again at this point since security and privacy are only tangentially related, so it's a bit off topic.
    Sorry, but even the article you posted confirms that the third party app stores are the lost vulnerable. Of course users are the first firewall, we agree on that.
    11-16-2017 08:33 AM
  5. Wolfjt's Avatar
    This is incorrect. The largest security hole, which is breached thousands of times more often than the next class of security issue, is the user.

    Ironically, two of the least secure OSes, Android and Win32, are the ones who gained widespread popularity. Unlike iOS or UWP, neither Win32 nor Android are secure by design and require a slew of tacked on functionality which attempt to make up for their security weaknesses... only somewhat successfully.

    When an attack is successful, Android and Win32 also have little to no mechanisms by which to contain the damage. You mentioned Android's dalvik (VM), but that is almost irrelevant in this regard, as security isn't its focus. The Android sandbox is more about protecting the app than it is about protecting the system from apps... that's a completely different approach from iOS or UWP.

    My main point is this:

    There are differences between these OSes.

    Many consumers tend to reduce the issue to "if it's widely targeted it's less secure", likely because (a) that makes sense without us having to understand anything about OS design and security and (b) the lack of attempts is how Apple was able to brainwash people into thinking OSX was secure (about a decade ago?) despite it being one of the least secure OSes out at the time.



    If you only hang out at places like mobilenations (strictly consumer oriented and barely technical), you'll rarely see such articles. Most reports are either:
    • too complicated and/or not publicly available (publications written by security researchers)
    • not spectacular enough, i.e. it doesn't generate enough clicks (e.g. affects only a few hundred people)
    • not unique enough, i.e it doesn't generate enough clicks (it happens every day, which means it's commonplace, i.e. it's not news and only of interest to those affected or who are paid to solve the problem)
    • not relevant to western media (only affects people with AOSP devices, primarily in Asia or the Ex-Soviet Union).

    Still, it is possible to find non-technical reports, but you must look for them. They aren't served to you automatically on consumer websites like this. These are just a few examples, limited to the topic you specified (banking), 2017, and English:

    https://clientsidedetection.com/marcher.html
    https://thehackernews.com/2017/08/an...ng-trojan.html
    Russia Hacking: Bank Customers Hit By Malware in Android Phones | Fortune
    https://blog.vasco.com/application-s...re-protection/

    The security industry agrees that attacking iOS devices would actually be the more profitable criminal endeavor. The main reason it's much rarer is not because of market-share, but because it's much harder to pull off.

    I'm bailing out again at this point since security and privacy are only tangentially related, so it's a bit off topic.
    Just one more thing, I agree Android is more vulnerable to hacking. It's a semi open platform. My point is that if you go through the official Google Play store you will be protected for the most part. Nothing is obviously hack proof. My point about VM is that apps are contained which from what I understand makes it almost impossible for hackers to break in. You points are very well taken.
    TgeekB likes this.
    11-16-2017 08:41 AM
  6. TgeekB's Avatar
    I agree 100%. The amount of data google collects is staggering, and besides google has already shown itself to be irresponsible with the power it already has by abusing its monopoly.

    If you use google services, then google knows your phone calls, texts, location, wifi spots, work place, house, shopping habits, websites you visit, apps you buy, how much time you spend per app, when you're awake, what you search for, what videos you watch...even the content of your phone calls if you use google voice...pretty much every facet of your life. And to take all that information and just sell it to others for a profit is just disgusting.

    And just for the record, this data is not anonymous and is hackable. I remember reading articles about how google engineers have been in trouble for doing things like reading emails, going through chat transcriptions and stalking kids.

    Edit: As an example for the last paragraph, I looked up the name of one such individual who got caught, his name was 'David Barksdale'
    If I understand correctly, they do no “just take that information and sell it to make a profit”, but I could be wrong. They direct advertising, from companies wanting to sell “x” to people who are interested in “x”. If you answer that advertisement, sure, they now know who you are but you accept that. If you do not answer the advertisement, that company has no clue who you are.
    Google does not sell mailing lists, your information is more valuable to them than that because only they know it. If they gave your information away to everyone, they would be out of business in a week. Google would cease to be valuable.
    11-16-2017 04:45 PM
  7. Guytronic's Avatar
    I think carriers make active mobile numbers freely available for call spammers to harvest. To me call spamming is way worse than any other privacy concern.
    It's turned the telephone into a weapon for criminals.
    RumoredNow and libra89 like this.
    11-16-2017 05:30 PM
  8. tgp's Avatar
    I think carriers make active mobile numbers freely available for call spammers to harvest. To me call spamming is way worse than any other privacy concern.
    It's turned the telephone into a weapon for criminals.
    Lists like that are widely available. You can purchase lists of names and phone numbers for a demographic you specify. Businesses buy them all the time for marketing purposes.
    RumoredNow likes this.
    11-16-2017 06:32 PM
  9. RumoredNow's Avatar
    I think carriers make active mobile numbers freely available for call spammers to harvest. To me call spamming is way worse than any other privacy concern.
    It's turned the telephone into a weapon for criminals.
    They have bots autodialing every number combination or off of curated lists. They've been doing this since the 1990's. Cloud/computing power has advanced so much that a 10 year old could do it from his tablet most likely.

    I've been called 1827 times (slight exaggeration) to take advantage of student loan forgiveness programs. I have no such loans and never have. It's obviously random dial or from a general list of numbers. I've also won a free Bahamas cruise once a week from the same "radio station giveaway program" several times a week for months now. Every time I block the number, they call me from another. From either scam. Bots behave this way.

    Sure enough there are people connected to it somewhere. I can't get rid of the cruise scam entirely because the bot calls and hangs up as soon as the phone rings. If you call back it goes to a recorded message saying I've won a free cruise from hot 100 or some smack and to go to a web site to register. Block the number and a new one calls with the same M.O.. I got rid of the student loan scammers though, despite the shifting numbers showing in caller ID. I'd press the number to speak to a "representative' each time and then cuss them out as fast, loud and crudely as possible until they hang up on me. Eventually they blocked their bot from dialing me.

    All this started since a casual acquaintance installed a bad app on his Android that was supposed to be a better contacts/call manager/caller ID app than stock. It started sending me spam texts to install the app until I advised him to uninstall it. He did, but the spam calls started right afterwards (i.e.: right after it could no longer use his SMS to try and lure others into the circle). Obviously it had permission to read his contacts/use phone/SMS/etc.

    My wife is on the same carrier as I am and she isn't having this problem. It's not the carriers.


    PS: for @Wolfjt this guy got the app off of Google Play. Verified by talking to him and by the links it sent me which clearly went to Play (which was ironic [or moronic] as I was on a Windows Phone at the time. See how safe it is to only use Play? Me thinks you protest too much on this point.
    Guytronic and a5cent like this.
    11-16-2017 10:24 PM
  10. Wevenhuis's Avatar
    Yes. Likely it is collecting some basic telemetry data. Microsoft does it too.
    11-17-2017 05:19 AM
  11. Wolfjt's Avatar
    They have bots autodialing every number combination or off of curated lists. They've been doing this since the 1990's. Cloud/computing power has advanced so much that a 10 year old could do it from his tablet most likely.

    I've been called 1827 times (slight exaggeration) to take advantage of student loan forgiveness programs. I have no such loans and never have. It's obviously random dial or from a general list of numbers. I've also won a free Bahamas cruise once a week from the same "radio station giveaway program" several times a week for months now. Every time I block the number, they call me from another. From either scam. Bots behave this way.

    Sure enough there are people connected to it somewhere. I can't get rid of the cruise scam entirely because the bot calls and hangs up as soon as the phone rings. If you call back it goes to a recorded message saying I've won a free cruise from hot 100 or some smack and to go to a web site to register. Block the number and a new one calls with the same M.O.. I got rid of the student loan scammers though, despite the shifting numbers showing in caller ID. I'd press the number to speak to a "representative' each time and then cuss them out as fast, loud and crudely as possible until they hang up on me. Eventually they blocked their bot from dialing me.

    All this started since a casual acquaintance installed a bad app on his Android that was supposed to be a better contacts/call manager/caller ID app than stock. It started sending me spam texts to install the app until I advised him to uninstall it. He did, but the spam calls started right afterwards (i.e.: right after it could no longer use his SMS to try and lure others into the circle). Obviously it had permission to read his contacts/use phone/SMS/etc.

    My wife is on the same carrier as I am and she isn't having this problem. It's not the carriers.


    PS: for @Wolfjt this guy got the app off of Google Play. Verified by talking to him and by the links it sent me which clearly went to Play (which was ironic [or moronic] as I was on a Windows Phone at the time. See how safe it is to only use Play? Me thinks you protest too much on this point.
    This article sums it up. https://www.wired.com/2016/12/never-...e-google-play/
    11-17-2017 12:10 PM
  12. RumoredNow's Avatar
    Totally disregards my point; but of course you once again promote your narrative that "if you stick to Google Play everything is...

    "
    nate0 likes this.
    11-17-2017 01:33 PM
  13. nate0's Avatar
    Totally disregards my point; but of course you once again promote your narrative that "if you stick to Google Play everything is...

    "
    Did you have to post the whole song?!
    Guytronic likes this.
    11-17-2017 03:31 PM
  14. RumoredNow's Avatar
    Did you have to post the whole song?!
    It's an ear worm, ain't it?
    nate0 likes this.
    11-17-2017 03:59 PM
  15. nate0's Avatar
    It's an ear worm, ain't it?
    Ya those kinds of worms can actually be more infectious...;)
    RumoredNow likes this.
    11-17-2017 04:11 PM
  16. TgeekB's Avatar
    Totally disregards my point; but of course you once again promote your narrative that "if you stick to Google Play everything is...

    "
    I don’t think anyone is saying it’s perfect (what is?) but it certainly cuts down on your chances. No doubt about that.
    11-17-2017 04:16 PM
  17. Wolfjt's Avatar
    Totally disregards my point; but of course you once again promote your narrative that "if you stick to Google Play everything is...

    "
    Obviously it's not just my point of view. So, you can disregard it, no sweat of my nose.
    11-17-2017 04:25 PM
  18. Scienceguy Labs's Avatar
    Call me crazy, but I'm all in with Google services. I don't mind at all that they profit off of the data they collect on me. If you don't like that aspect of using an Android device, that's fine. There are other options. And I totally understand other people's concerns. But, if you want to use a high end Android phone like it's supposed to be used, you most likely need to give in to their way of doing things. Google has developed an absolutely amazing and lucrative business model, regardless if anyone agrees with it or not. It's proven to be a worthy endeavor for them. Great for them. Great for me too, because I get to use all sorts of cool devices. 😁 Really wish MS would innovate on the scale and the speed that Google does.
    11-17-2017 05:49 PM
  19. Scienceguy Labs's Avatar
    And holy cow...that song up above is truly special. 😂😂😂
    11-17-2017 05:50 PM
  20. Guytronic's Avatar
    There's an Android app named "Spy Monitor" that makes it easy to see which apps on my phone are hitting servers around the globe.
    Sometimes I see multiple traces to Mountain View CA where google lives.
    Something that worries me is my Mate 9 connects to a location in Hong Kong called China Network Services. Not sure who that is...might be Huawei I'm thinking.
    11-17-2017 06:51 PM
  21. Scienceguy Labs's Avatar
    There's an Android app named "Spy Monitor" that makes it easy to see which apps on my phone are hitting servers around the globe.
    Sometimes I see multiple traces to Mountain View CA where google lives.
    Something that worries me is my Mate 9 connects to a location in Hong Kong called China Network Services. Not sure who that is...might be Huawei I'm thinking.
    https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/201...b4a790f821.jpg
    Thanks. Downloading now.
    Guytronic and libra89 like this.
    11-17-2017 09:24 PM
  22. RumoredNow's Avatar
    Obviously it's not just my point of view. So, you can disregard it, no sweat of my nose.
    If you disregard what I write, then why quote me?

    See how that works? When I quote you (or throw you an @mention) I'm addressing your point. Yet you feel compelled to quote others while ignoring the very arguments you quote. That's intellectual bankruptcy. Simple repetition of your view without actually addressing the counterclaim does not advance a conversation or refute the counterclaim.

    It's like scoring a goal and after the opponent scores a goal wanting the referee to credit your first goal all over again without running any plays.
    11-18-2017 05:49 AM
  23. TgeekB's Avatar
    So back on topic.....
    RumoredNow likes this.
    11-18-2017 07:05 AM
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