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Pixalate Releases H1 2021 Mobile App ‘Dangerous Permissions’ Report: 2.3 million Google Play Store apps have at least one ‘dangerous permission’

Sep 22, 2021 6:00:00 AM

Pixalate, the market-leading fraud protection, privacy, and compliance analytics platform for Connected TV (CTV) and Mobile Advertising, today released the H1 2021 Mobile App ‘Dangerous Permissions’ Report containing insights about the permissions requested from mobile apps in the Google Play Store.

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The report helps advertisers and consumers identify potential privacy risk factors stemming from apps available for download in the Google Play Store. Pixalate’s data science team analyzed over 3.3 million apps in the Google Play Store to identify trends relating to “Dangerous Permissions” — a term used by Google to describe permissions that “give [an] app additional access to restricted data,” many of which “access private user data, a special type of restricted data that includes potentially sensitive information.”

Key Findings

 

2.34 million Google Play Store apps have 1+ “dangerous permission”

  • Represents 69% of all apps in the Google Play Store
  • An increase from 2.27 million in H1 2020 (3% rise year-over-year)

“Dangerous permissions” on the rise

  • 21% YoY increase in the number of apps requesting access to Record Audio from the device’s Microphone
  • 13% YoY increase in apps requesting access to the device’s Camera
  • 17% YoY increase in apps requesting Read Calendar access

Over 1 million apps can access precise user location (GPS coordinates)

  • 30% of all apps in the Google Play Store
  • 6% YoY increase

What’s included in the H1 2021 Mobile App ‘Dangerous Permissions’ Report

Pixalate's H1 2021 Mobile App ‘Dangerous Permissions’ Report includes YoY trends of key “dangerous permissions”, including:

  • Record Audio
  • Camera Access
  • Precise Location Access (GPS Coordinates)
  • Monitor User Activity
  • Read Calendar
  • Read Contacts
  • Make Phone Calls
  • And more

Download a free copy of the report here: H1 2021 Mobile App ‘Dangerous Permissions’ Report.

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You can also watch our webinar on October 7, 2021, we will review this data — and other data about risk factors in the mobile in-app ecosystem — in greater detail.

Disclaimer

The content of this report reflects Pixalate’s opinions with respect to the factors that Pixalate believes can be useful to the digital media industry. Any data shared is grounded in Pixalate’s proprietary technology and analytics, which Pixalate is continuously evaluating and updating. Any references to outside sources should not be construed as endorsements. Pixalate’s opinions are just that, opinions, which means that they are neither facts nor guarantees. It is important to also note that the mere fact that an app receives “dangerous permissions” (as defined by Google) does not necessarily mean that such app, or its publisher, is actually exploiting data. Instead, Pixalate is merely rendering an opinion that these facts may be suggestive of heightened risks to data subjects. Pixalate is sharing this data not to impugn the standing or reputation of any entity, person or app, but, instead, to report facts as they pertain to apps in the Google Play Store. Android and Google Play are trademarks of Google LLC. “Android robot” by Google LLC is licensed under CC BY 3.0.

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