Like it or not, your phone is an extension of you and consumers are divided over their allegiances to their device company. Self-described "techies" seem to prefer Android phones which allow for more customization and iPhone users prefer ease-of-use and tend to lean towards a white collar, soccer mom demographic. But which scores higher on privacy protection? Apple or Android?
Before we get into the privacy praises for Android and Apple as they each have some advantages, here are two recommendations that work for Android or Apple if you're a stickler for privacy:
Your phone camera can be accessed by some of your APPS. Keep them covered when not using: Try out our incredible Creepblockers. Webcam and laptop microphone covers. Simple, durable, and effective. Cool patterns and phrases to make you or feel good--yeah, we think we're pretty funny and nice.
Are you worried your phone can hear you or track your location even when it's off or in airplane? Many people are - So here's one way to make sure nothing-no signal-gets in or out. It's a total seal from any wireless energy-- Locked Tight beautiful Faraday Case when you're not using it. And bonus: No EMF!
A New Privacy Hack: Side Channel Attacks
All phones are subject to in a trending hacking system called side channel attacks. Defined this way on wikipedia:
For computer security, a side-channel attack is any attack based on information gained from the implementation of a computer system, rather than weaknesses in the implemented algorithm itself (e.g.cryptanalysis and software bugs) Timing information, power consumption, electromagnetic (EMF)leaks or even sound can provide an extra source of information, which can be exploited.
explains in this article this article in The Conversation how sensors like your smartphones microphones, cameras, light and humidity sensors and other phone components, like the thermometer and barometer can be accessed by bad-acting apps to track your every move.
Apple VS Android and Privacy issues:
We know that when it comes to individual privacy, using Apple products is probably the lesser of a couple evils. We know that they won't help the FBI crack an iPhone user/terrorist's by giving the phone's passcode. In terms of large-scale privacy, Apple has announced that it doesn't sell your information. BUT it still collects it.
Apple doesn’t assemble user profiles, encrypts iMessage and Facetime end-to-end and does a ton of computation involving your private information on your device rather than on an Apple server. BUT that doesn't mean that there won't be "glitches" and hackers. The recent Facetime Bug was a doozie! It allowed iphone spying when ever there was a group chat! Which, my friends is another good reason why Tech Wellness always recommends using an end to end encrytpted text app like Signal to keep your texts and chats spy-free.
Apple had been banking on the emerging phenomena of "privacy by design" in the tech marketplace: the less personal information that a potential service/product needs, the more desirable it will be to the consumer. But, Apple still allows apps and Apple to know A LOT about YOU
Tim Cook, Apple CEO, announced that you can download you data anytime--and delete it when you delete your Apple account. HMMM, okay. So, each time you buy a phone you can consider a new Apple ID and erase all the information associated with you old Apple ID. This screenshot gives you an idea of just how much and what information on your phone-is held by Apple . You can download yours here
Android phones have privacy issues of their own. Just six months ago, the Associated Press revealed that even with location services disabled, Google was still able to access and track location information from Android phone users. Of course information is collected on your phone just by logging into any google product, but Google also uses various sensors and cues that are a part of the phone to track and get information.
5 Ways to Protect Your Privacy With Apple
YOUR NAME appears as Hotspot or as someone to Air Drop: So Change it. Touch Settings>General>About>Name. Then, type in your new name. Video and More
- Limit Who Sees Your Phone on Airdrop: Home Screen, swipe up to reveal your control panel- Press between the 4 WiFi, Bluetooth, Airplane and Cell-data icons: You'll see Airdrop Pop up. Press Airdrop icon and you can choose from Receiving off-(invisible to Airdrop function) Contacts-only or Everyone. You can also do this: Settings>General>Airdrop
- Turn off WiFi hotspots until you need them AND you're in a safe location. To turn off hotspot, go to Settings>Cellular>Personal Hotspot>Off.
- Know which Apps are accessing your Microphone: On an iPhone under Setting > click Privacy >under Privacy> click Microphone, here you’ll see a list of the apps you have that want to access your mic. Toggle to disable.
- Limit Sharing Location: Does everyone or anyone need to know where you are? Settings>Privacy>Location Services - You can turn it off or scroll through every app and decide which ones need your location. Be extra careful-Turn on Location Services: and toggle off every app option and then turn Location Services off.
5 Ways to Protect Your Privacy With Android
Android For Android 4.2 and above
- For Most Android Phones, The default name on the phone when you're tethering, setting up a hotspot or using Bluetooth, is the model number of your phone. A nice protection. However, if you change that--and you can, then that name appears as the Hotspot, tether or Blue tooth identifier. To Change it. Settings >About > Device Name, type in a cool fun and stealthy name for your device in the text field and select OK. On newer Android smartphones and tablets, changing the device name from Settings> About device automatically changes the Bluetooth name for the device. Otherwise you'll need to change the name in the Bluetooth setting as well.
- Limit Sharing Location: Go to Settings>Location Toggle it Off You also have the option to allow individual apps--like Google and Google maps permissions. We recommend never giving Google any of your information.
- Know which Apps can Access your Microphone: With Android it’s under Settings> Apps> and each app is individually listed. The story about Beacons mentions that these work even without a data or WIFI connection.
- Stop Google from Listening In.For Privacy, Google is a big privacy invader. Check your Google Settings. Go To Menu>Settings> Google> Voice> OK Google Detection Toggle off Ok Google and Trusted Voice. The problem here is that just like Siri, your phone has to listen all the time in order to be ready for the voice commands.
- AND Deactivate Google Assistant: and the sharing of your information you're allowing by using it. Press Home button> press upper right three dot Menu button>Phone>Google Assistant. Toggle off.
Check your Google Account setting for privacy too-Google takes so much of your information--from maps, from searches from all the ways you use Google. Be Aware!