A lie that is commonly seen over the Internet is that I have read and agree to the user agreement.
In fact, many users just click on “I Agree” without reading the user agreement. Did you read the user agreement before installing the application?
How does the user agreement compromise users’ privacy?
Terms of Service: It refers to the provisions or policies that the user agrees to abide by while using a service or product.
Whether you are signing up for an account or installing an app, what will come to you is a user agreement, which you must agree to before proceeding to the next step or getting access to the service. Most users just skip reading the user agreement when installing an app. Not to mention paying attention to what permissions the app requests. This can be exploited by unauthorized apps to collect and sell user data. Thus, it has become a profit-making tool for third party companies such as real estate, lending agencies and education and training organizations to realize commercial marketing. That’s why some users keep receiving spam calls from these companies.
Some app permissions that you may not pay attention to are also very essential to your privacy, including contacts, location, message, storage, browsing history, sensors, etc. Once illegal apps get these permissions, they can collect user data, make user portraits and conduct targeted marketing.
Advanced technology is supposed to serve us. In contrast, it has posed great threats to our life because we give apps too many permissions. But we have no choice but to agree to the user agreement if we want to use the service or product.
Is the user agreement fair?
It seems that the user agreement between the user and the service provider is fair. Users are not forced to agree to the content of the user agreement. However, the user, as an individual, is at a huge disadvantage in the fight against the service provider who is supported by a large amount of capital and a professional team. Besides, many Internet giants have achieved a monopoly in some fields. Although you don’t agree with the terms and policies in the user agreement, you have to click on “I Agree” to use the service or product.
This is quite unfair. Nothing can be done by the users to fight against these big giants.
How to protect private data from being compromised by unreasonable user agreements?
Of course, the first thing to do is to read the user agreement carefully. Even if the user agreement is very long and you are eager to use the app, you should never skip a user agreement. Try to grab the key content. If you find some provisions that do harm to your privacy, you can switch to an alternative. Although you may have no other choices in most cases, it’s better than not reading the user agreement. Otherwise, you won’t know what data is collected and how they deal with your data.
Be careful when voting over the Internet. It is true that some organizers require access to your personal information when you want to vote for someone you support. What’s more, they even ask you to fill in your phone number. The vast majority of these activities are held to attract customers and even collect user data. Therefore, you’d better not vote in activities held by unknown parties, especially those requesting you to provide your mobile phone number or even ID number.
When you install an app on your device, you should pay more attention to the permissions it requests. Many permissions are unintentionally approved when you install apps, such as contacts, location, message, storage, camera, microphone and so on. Some apps even require permissions that have nothing to do with the services they provide. For example, news apps requests access to your contacts. Among the app permissions, you should focus on contacts, camera and location.
Since many apps allow users to sign up via an email account, you’d better use a separate email account for apps from unknown sources. When registering an app account, most users choose to log up via an email account and use the same email address and password for other apps or websites. This is done in case they forget the account and password. However, apps from unknown sources may not secure your accounts. Once your account is disclosed, other accounts that use the same email and password will soon be easily compromised. To secure all your accounts, you’d better use different email accounts for different purposes. If you can’t separate all your accounts, it is a good idea to set separate accounts and passwords for unknown apps, which will reduce the risk of credential stuffing.
The user agreement is so important to your security and privacy that you should always read it carefully before click on “I Agree”. When you are using these apps, you should also use a VPN to prevent others from tracking you online. VPN download!!!