3300 apps from the Google Play Store addressed to children, investigated for abusive information collection

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According to an analysis conducted in the United States on a group of 5855 Android apps addressed to children, contact details and even user location coordinates would have come to the possession of companies with uncertain reputation without the permission and permission of their parents

The automated filtering process has highlighted 3337 applications that collect information in a way that forces local legislation to protect the identity of children under the age of 13. Of these, 281 apps committed serious violations, collecting contact information and physical location of children without parents' knowledge. Another 1,100 apps gave third-party information to identify users and 2281 apps violate Google's rules on disassociation of information collected with the so-called Advertising ID used for ad serving

Another interesting fact is that 92% of the applications identified as having links to the Facebook network did not communicate to the social network the age indicator "under 13 years", the observation of the usage habits continuing the same as for the adults

Added at a rate of 2,700 entries each day, children's games and apps are a serious challenge for Google. Unlike malware scanning, verifying other good practice activities in gathering and managing user information requires manual inspection by a Google operator. It remains to be seen whether the automation of this process by introducing a filter such as the one developed by the company called AppBrain can improve the situation, considering that the rules by which violations are established leave much room for interpretation

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