What are the dangers of using free apps? The average individual spends 4-5 hours a day on their cell phone. Cell phones are a vital component for individuals to pay bills, track steps, listen to music, take photos, and more. The average cell phone can hold more music and pictures than ever before. With this increase in storage and an increase in usability, there has also been an increase in applications. These applications can be dangerous as they can transmit viruses as well as spam. Spam is a comment element in our digital age and has the potential to harm you and your device.
What Are the Dangers of Using Free Apps
While most individuals understand the importance of a cell phone, they might disregard the real significance of applications. Applications make up every aspect of the phone and allow individuals to take a device that makes calls and texts to a device that allows for watching movies or even buying a car. These applications can also provide a gateway for hacking and the sale and use of data, which can lead to dangerous spam. Utilizing any application free or not comes with a price, whether the trade of data or trade of currency.
Types of Applications
The two main types of applications are free and paid. There is a third category of applications that come with phones but will be left out of this discussion, as they are part of the operating system. Paid applications offer a service for a fee based on the money spent. This service can be paid monthly or one time, but generally does not have ads. Even with these paid applications can cause dangerous access to private information that can be sold. Any application has the potential of being hacked. This hacked information can be sold on the dark web or used by individuals to steal identities or blackmail individuals.
Free applications are the second main category and are generally supported by advertisements and data distribution. These free applications allow for many services but most do not pay attention to the agreement when downloading since there is no financial cost. Advertising does allow for these applications to run for free but often is subsidized by the sale or use of personal data. The advertising allows for spam to enter devices and emails which can compromise not only a phone but emails and other linked accounts. Everything from where you are to what you do can be transmitted through a phone which can be very dangerous.
What Are the Dangers of Using Free Apps?
Data Sold and Sold Again
Data that is collected can be sold to other third parties which can be used for spam accounts which can compromise personal information. The more free applications an individual has the more gateways that can be established, which can result in damage to phones and lives. The best course of action when utilizing free applications is to first and foremost read the agreement that is signed when downloading the application. Seeing what information will be collected is necessary to ensure what can and cannot be compromised. Secondly, reviewing what information you have on your phone to ensure any applications have minimal access to critical information.
Third, and most importantly, sticking with applications that are paid may be a better course of action, especially from companies you know and trust. Utilizing paid applications can limit the amount of overall spam while also fulfilling the needs of the phone user. Dangerous free applications have and always will be a concern but sticking to paid applications and applications from companies you know may help keep your data safe.
Any application, free or paid comes with the possibility of dangerous spam. This tradeoff of goods versus services has and always will exist and must be monitored to ensure that spam and data stealing is limited. The cost to regain someone’s stolen identity is often high and a lengthy process. Keeping the number of applications installed to a minimum and a little bit of research may help in stopping any dangerous spam from infiltrating your phone. While the upfront cost of free applications is nothing, the long term cost may be much higher. As long as there is money to be made, spam and data will be a commodity that must be protected.
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