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EVERY time you purchase an app on Google Play, your name, address and email is passed on to the devs

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 EVERY time you purchase an app on Google Play, your name, address and email is passed on to the devs
Unread 2 years agoclass of '10 - away - #1
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SeattleWon 690 heat pts690 space
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The "flaw" - which appears to be by design - was discovered this morning by Sydney app developer, Dan Nolan who told news.com.au that he was uncomfortable being the custodian of this information and that there was no reason for any developer to have this information at their finger tips.
You may remember Mr Nolan as the creator of the Paul Keating insult generator all that hit number one in the Aussie App Store last month."
"Let me make this crystal clear, every App purchase you make on Google Play gives the developer your name, suburb and email address with no indication that this information is actually being transferred," Nolan wrote on his blog.
"With the information I have available to me through the checkout portal I could track down and harass users who left negative reviews or refunded the app purchase."
Harrassment aside, the problems posed by malware - "virus" programs that infect your phone, or computer and steal your personal details - are far more serious.
With Google customers' details just sitting in developers accounts, all it would take is a half decent piece of malware software for that information to be accessed. These personal details could then be used to access the users' bank details. That's also more than enough information to be able to access your other devices which could also be mined for more data - insurance information, other credit cards - which could then be used to access your banking credentials.
Mr Nolan told News.com.au that tens of millions of Google customers could be affected.
"As far as I can tell this impacts every person who purchased an App on the Play Store," he said.
"I can't see any way to opt out of providing that information and it seems to be a feature of the Google checkout process. I don't know whether it applies to free apps, but there are hundreds of thousands of apps that are available for pay on the play store and there are millions of people who buy Android apps out there, I'd say easily millions or tens of millions of people.
"It's active in every market that Google accepts payment for apps. That's a lot of people having their personal information handed over without them knowing."
Mr Nolan told News.com.au that user information has always been provided to developers, "as far as he could tell and that the reason it hadn't been discovered until now was because the people who would have paid attention to it were likely exploiting it and selling users' personal information, it using it as an extra source of revenue on top of what they were making off their Google Play / Android app.
"In comparison to the information you get from Apple which is just a quantity of sales in a Country and then a cheque three months later, this is absolutely absurd," he said.
"I doubt anyone expects to have their contact information, name and suburb sent to a developer purely because they decide to buy an app off the Play Store. "
Google's terms of service state that it may store your personal information including your name, address and billing details, but nowhere in its privacy statement does the company explicitly state that it passes on your personal information to developers, every time you purchase their app.
The terms of service state that Google will share your address and personal information if you purchase a magazine subscription through Google Play, but it makes no mention of other apps.
"This is a massive oversight by Google," Nolan wrote on his blog.
"Under no circumstances should I be able to get the information of the people who are buying my apps unless they opt into it and itís made crystal clear to them that Iím getting this information. This is a massive, massive privacy issue Google. Fix it. Immediately."
Google has not responded to news.com.au's request for comment.
UPDATE: This story has been amended at the request of Google.
Read more: Google 'flaw' puts users' details on display | Information, Gadgets, Mobile Phones News & Reviews | News.com.au
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2 peeps gave props to SeattleWon invaderchin (02-14-2013) , hot topic  (02-13-2013)

22 comments for "EVERY time you purchase an app on Google Play, your name, address and email is passed on to the devs"

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Unread 2 years agoclass of '04 - away - #2
bnw99 12 heat pts12 space
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well damn
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '10 - away - #3
MagicOnTheTire 6 heat pts space
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Paying for apps?
Where they do dat at?
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '04 - away - #4
Barcode 7 heat pts space
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Boxden Royalty
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goes to google.
types app name + .apk
finds app.
downloads.
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '04 - away - #5
NBA Brawler 92 heat pts92 space
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Al Saheem
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MagicOnTheTire said:
Paying for apps?
Where they do dat at?
Barcode said:
goes to google.
types app name + .apk
finds app.
downloads.



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Unread 2 years agoclass of '04 - away - #6
Silver N Black 18 heat pts18 space
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Barcode said:
goes to google.
types app name + .apk
finds app.
downloads.
better hope that download wasn't injected with something
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '06 - away - #7
varcitykid 6 heat pts space
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Barcode said:
goes to google.
types app name + .apk
finds app.
downloads.
You just put me on
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '11 - away - #8
One Gud Cide 23 heat pts23 space
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Barcode said:
goes to google.
types app name + .apk
finds app.
downloads.
enjoy your malware dummy now your name, address, and email is passed to a billion chinese people. you gotta be dumb as fu*k to download random apk files from sources you don't know
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '11 - away - #9
XxHeAtMaKeRxX 27 heat pts27 space
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '11 - away - #10
invaderchin 152 heat pts152 space
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i can know more if i want.

Peep my app. No ad's and its free (for now).

Just for the lolz.

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Unread 2 years agoclass of '04 - away - #11
Barcode 7 heat pts space
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Boxden Royalty
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One Gud Cide said:
enjoy your malware dummy now your name, address, and email is passed to a billion chinese people. you gotta be dumb as fu*k to download random apk files from sources you don't know
Obviously I dont just download from any link.
I gotta rotation of a couple sites I use now.

But yeah disclaimer, be careful where you
download files from. If you just started using
the internet yesterday I dont suggest you
do it. Use your discretion.
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '04 - away - #12
yaobabydaddy  space
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Barcode said:
Obviously I dont just download from any link.
I gotta rotation of a couple sites I use now.

But yeah disclaimer, be careful where you
download files from. If you just started using
the internet yesterday I dont suggest you
do it. Use your discretion.
Wusup Brodie pm ya boy a site or 2 onetime tho
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '04 - away - #13
stalyon2004 9 heat pts space
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yaobabydaddy said:
Wusup Brodie pm ya boy a site or 2 onetime tho
Need some myself too. Just got the S3 and factory reset my old phone. But my son always asking for my phone to play games on it. Didnt think about leaving my old phone the way it was, so he can still play the games on there.
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '04 - away - #14
Scoop24 15 heat pts15 space
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Mobilism was my spot when i had a android .
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '07 - away - #15
Deniro732 5 heat pts space
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NBA Brawler said:



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Unread 2 years agoclass of '05 - away - #16
white-chocolate 112 heat pts112 space
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purchase apps.. yes i do
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '06 - away - #17
servesurite 31 heat pts31 space
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Barcode said:
goes to google.
types app name + .apk
finds app.
downloads.
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '07 - away - #18
Eddie..|M 9 heat pts space
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yall be scouring the net, and dl viruses just to avoid paying a dollar
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '12 - away - #19
saisai31 7 heat pts space
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Aptoide
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Unread 2 years agoclass of '05 - away - #20
Dillinger805 4 heat pts space
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a p k m a n i a ?? but i do purchase apps when i feel are great use to me but for some reason games i just dont like paying haha i never keep them on phone longer then a few weeks,my tablet has most of the games i do play from time to time
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