Verizon Denies Imposing Spyware on Users: A few days back, there was news which was received with outrage and fumes by the smart world. Already Privacy in the social media and other social devices is a risk and then came this official report from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) stating that Verizon will be selling customer data and will drag the users into unnecessary Ad world using its new in-built app.

Family Base Verizon:

We can call Verizon Wireless as Cellco Partnership and it is the American telecommunications company. Verizon Communications-owned it. It provides the wireless products and services. In the US, it is the largest and well-known telecommunications provider.

Verizon about Spyware_ Verizon Denies Imposing Spyware on Users
Verizon about Spyware_ Verizon Denies Imposing Spyware on Users

In the words of EFF, “With this spyware, Verizon will be able to sell ads to you across the Internet based on things like which bank you use and whether you’ve downloaded a fertility app”.

What is Family Base Verizon:

It is the service and the officials using this can monitor all the wireless activities. We have to set our usage limits and account registration restrictions. It will help kids to understand how to use the devices better. They presented the insights of the services in the dashboard. This will be helpful for the parents who possess the multiple family members under the same account.

With FamilyBase, you can:

  • Gain insights into your children’s wireless activities:
    • Calls – Contacted number, call duration, date/time
    • Texts – Contacted numbers, date/time
    • Apps – Name of app, date/time downloaded, hours of user per app
    • Contacts – View by name
    • Receive email and/or free text alerts on activity and usage
  • Set up controls for each user, including:
    • Set time restrictions for when a device can’t be used
    • Block contacts that you don’t want you child to call or text
    • Create trusted contacts that can be communicated with anytime, except when the device is locked
    • Set limits on usage for data, messages, calls and purchases
    • Lock your child’s phone on demand

We have to pay $4.99 per month for the whole account. We can use this tool to communicate with our children, or with anyone. The officials will provide the 1-month free trial offer also to facilitate the service.

It was said that Verizon is planning to install a spyware into their new mobiles which will track all the activities of the user and will eventually open doors for the Ad world to reach the user easily.

The data that the Privacy policy of AppFlash (the app they claim to be the spyware) approves to be tracked from its users are:

  • mobile number
  • device identifiers
  • device type
  • operating system
  • location
  • contact information and a few more.

This list of data tracking has taken the users of Verizon into panic mode and was widely condemned.

Verizon immediately jumped for the Damage Control steps and reported that the news from EFF isn’t exactly what Verizon is planning on and the users don’t have to worry. It also explained the benefits of having AppFlash installed.

What does AppFlash do:

AppFlash is like a search hub on your phone. You can search for anything in this application. When you search for anything like a restaurant, music, app, locations, this app will guide you faster to the relevant results. To make the relevancy accurate, Verizon says that the data tracked from the customers are important. The data will also be shared with the subsidiaries of Verizon AOL and Yahoo. Verizon also claims that it has no plan of doing this without the user’s consent like EFF claimed.

Verizon’s Director of Corporate Communications, Kelly Crummey left a report in answer to EFF saying, “As we said earlier this week, we are testing AppFlash to make app discovery better for consumers. The test is on a single phone – LG K20 V – and you have to opt-in to use the app. Or, you can easily disable the app. Nobody is required to use it. Verizon is committed to your privacy.”

After this reply from Verizon, EFF took its initial report back and is now working on the credibility of the app anyways. Verizon has said that the activity tracking from AppFlash will only be done if the user enables it. But questions are raising which ask why the users should take the pain of disabling something. What is the necessity to in – built this app in the first place.

However, AppFlash is already installed in LG K20 V for testing purpose, and in case you are using it, you should make sure you have disabled the app. To manage your location tracking by AppFlash, you should do it in, Settings >> Personal >> Location Services. The alternate way is to simply uninstall AppFlash and stay away from the easier finding luxury and all the further consequences from the Ads.

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