Open letter from 50+ organizations about Android pre-installed apps

    Open letter from 50+ organizations about Android pre-installed apps

    Open letter from 50+ organizations about Android pre-installed apps


    Posted: 11 Jan 2020

    Privacy International and over 50 other organisations have submitted a letter to Alphabet Inc. CEO Sundar Pichai asking Google to take action against exploitative pre-installed software on Android devices.


    Dear Mr. Pichai,

    We, the undersigned, agree with you: privacy cannot be a luxury offered only to those people who can afford it.

    And yet, Android Partners - who use the Android trademark and branding - are manufacturing devices that contain pre-installed apps that cannot be deleted (often known as "bloatware"), which can leave users vulnerable to their data being collected, shared and exposed without their knowledge or consent.

    These phones carry the "Google Play Protect" branding, but research shows that 91% of pre-installed apps do not appear in Google Play – Google’s app store.

    These pre-installed apps can have privileged custom permissions that let them operate outside the Android security model. This means permissions can be defined by the app - including access to the microphone, camera and location - without triggering the standard Android security prompts. Users are therefore completely in the dark about these serious intrusions.

    We are concerned that this leaves users vulnerable to the exploitative business practices of cheap smartphone manufacturers around the world.

    The changes we believe are needed most urgently are as follows:

    • Individuals should be able to permanently uninstall the apps on their phones. This should include any related background services that continue to run even if the apps are disabled.
    • Pre-installed apps should adhere to the same scrutiny as Play Store apps, especially in relation to custom permissions.
    • Pre-installed apps should have some update mechanism, preferably through Google Play and without a user account. Google should refuse to certify a device on privacy grounds, where manufacturers or vendors have attempted to exploit users in this way.

    We, the undersigned, believe these fair and reasonable changes would make a huge difference to millions of people around the world who should not have to trade their privacy and security for access to a smartphone.

    We urge you to use your position as an influential agent in the ecosystem to protect people and stop manufacturers from exploiting them in a race to the bottom on the pricing of smartphones.

    Yours sincerely,


    Read more: An open letter to Google | PI
    Brink's Avatar Posted By: Brink
    11 Jan 2020


  1. Posts : 26,381
    Windows 11 Pro 22631.3155
       #1

    The same policy should be with Windows 10 as well.
      My Computer


  2. Posts : 11,247
    Windows / Linux : Arch Linux
       #2

    Josey Wales said:
    The same policy should be with Windows 10 as well.
    Hi there

    just get one of those old fashioned "phone only" types of phones --without cameras or whatever.

    If you want to browse Internet use tablet or computer --go back to using phones for their original purpose --making and receiving PHONE CALLS.

    Cheers
    jimbo
      My Computer


  3. Posts : 26,381
    Windows 11 Pro 22631.3155
       #3

    jimbo45 said:
    Hi there

    just get one of those old fashioned "phone only" types of phones --without cameras or whatever.

    If you want to browse Internet use tablet or computer --go back to using phones for their original purpose --making and receiving PHONE CALLS.

    Cheers
    jimbo
    I have a Smart Phone and only use it for texting & Talking. I was referring that the Policy in The OP should be used in Windows 10 PC. A user should have the ability to completely remove them and not just hide them.
      My Computer


  4. Posts : 254
    Windows 10 Pro
       #4

    Josey Wales said:
    I have a Smart Phone and only use it for texting & Talking. I was referring that the Policy in The OP should be used in Windows 10 PC. A user should have the ability to completely remove them and not just hide them.
      My Computer

  5.   My Computer


  6. Posts : 14,039
    Windows 11 Pro X64 22H2 22621.1848
       #6

    Josey Wales said:
    The same policy should be with Windows 10 as well.
      My Computers


  7. Posts : 14,983
    Windows 10 IoT
       #7

    Josey Wales said:
    The same policy should be with Windows 10 as well.
    Just go to Settings > Apps and see how many Microsoft Preinstalled Apps have no Uninstall option.
    You shouldn't have to resort to powershell to ditch them.
      My Computer


  8. Posts : 7,254
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
       #8

    I would really like to experience pure Android, without all this other apps.
      My Computers


 

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