How to prevent apps from collecting your data on your Android smartphone

Threats to your privacy and security are everywhere, so protecting your data should be the highest priority for anyone with a smartphone. However, one threat many people overlook is the company who supplies the operating system your Android phone runs — Google.

Google offers lots of great software and services for free. But if Google isn’t charging for these services, how can they be the world’s most valuable brand? The answer is simple: If the product is free, you’re the product. Google has found that advertisers are willing to pay more money than consumers.

Search giant, Google has announced the updated privacy and security policies at its developers’ conference I/O 2019 with its upcoming Android update version ‘Q’
In case, you are worried about your privacy and want to prevent apps from collecting your data, here are a few tips that can help

Do not allow all the permissions to the apps
Sometimes we have noticed a weather app seeking permission for making a call or accessing the camera, which does not make sense as it is a weather app and all it needs to function properly is the location and internet connectivity.

Similarly, if an app or game asks for the microphone access there is a possibility that they might be listening.

So, if an app is asking for a permission that does feel strange, feel free to deny it and if the app is adamant and denies to run without the permission, consider downloading an alternative app from the app store

Users can also manage the app permissions one-by-one and here’s how to do it
1. Head to the Android phone ‘Settings’
2. Look for the ‘Apps’ option or Application manager based on the smartphone
3. Tap on the specific app from the list
4. Head to the ‘Permission’ section
5. Turn off and on the toggle placed in front of each permission like microphone, camera, calls, etc

Alternatively, users can also head to ‘Security’ settings-> App Permissions and choose the permission type to see what all apps have been granted with that particular permission. Here users can also remove and add new apps.