Parents should be concerned about app security

Veracode released an infographic outlining the importance of mobile application security for children. It provides parents with tips for protecting their children, their privacy and their wallets, when children use mobile applications on their devices.

Click to download the complete infographic

According to research gathered by Veracode, seven out of ten children use tablets or other smart devices, with the average child using these devices five days a week. Though many parents believe mobile apps developed for children are educational and safe, many of these applications perform functions parents are not aware of.

For example:

  • 22% link to social media accounts
  • 59% collect personal information
  • 58% include ads
  • 84% (including free apps) allow users to spend additional money.

Veracode offers the following tips:

  • Restrict content to what’s age appropriate for the child
  • Monitor and review all new app downloads including the descriptions and behaviors
  • Set a password so children cannot make app purchases
  • Disable Wi-Fi and data services when children are unsupervised.

“The majority of apps, including those targeted to children, collect identity information and access a concerning amount of personal data on the device. Free apps in the games category tend to be especially nefarious. If parents are installing apps for their children to use on their smart phone or tablet that they also use for work, sensitive corporate data may be exposed as well,” said Theodora Titonis, vice president, mobile.

“From a security and privacy standpoint, the most important thing parents can do is monitor application downloads and talk to their kids about what is appropriate usage,” she added.

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