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80% of airline apps are reportedly spying on you

The friendly skies just got a little less friendly.

Hands holding a smartphone with airline apps displayed on it
Image: TNMT

Picture this: You’re in the airport, phone in hand, using an airline app to check your flight status. Suddenly, you get a creepy feeling. Is something watching you? Well, if you have airline apps installed on your phone, you might not be too far off.

Recent surveys have shown that a stunning 80% of airline apps were found to be spying on users. Yup – that app you barely use might just be a double agent. 80%!

The news comes courtesy of the cybersecurity team at Zenshield, who discovered that four out of five airline apps contained spyware.

Spying, in this case, refers to unauthorized access and use of your personal data. This could mean tracking your online activity, rifling through your personal messages, or even getting their hands on sensitive information like bank details.

Terrifying, isn’t it? Darius Blake of Zenshield weighed in on the issue, describing the situation as concerning.

“This level of unauthorized access to personal data is not only alarming but also leads to potential breaches of trust and privacy among app users,” Blake warned us.

Thankfully, Darius came with tips on how to protect yourself:

  1. Regularly update your apps and devices.
  2. Only download apps from trusted sources.
  3. Check the permissions the app requests.
  4. Use reliable security software.
  5. Read reviews and ratings.

So, folks, consider this a friendly reminder of the digital hygiene habits we always preach here at KnowTechie. Remember, your personal data is just that: Personal.

For a real-life scenario of how these apps may potentially spy on you, one anonymous traveler shared their unsettling experience:

“I frequently used an airline app for convenience. But when I started getting emails and ads related to places I casually searched for on the app, I felt my privacy was invaded. It was a wake-up call.”

But don’t cancel all your flight plans just yet. Not all apps are offenders. Some respect user privacy and have strict data protection regulations.

As Blake puts it, “It’s critical to strike a balance between convenience and safety. Take the precautions, do your due diligence and don’t hesitate to question why certain permissions are needed.”

Have any thoughts on this? Drop us a line below in the comments, or carry the discussion to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Kevin is KnowTechie's founder and executive editor. With over 15 years of blogging experience in the tech industry, Kevin has transformed what was once a passion project into a full-blown tech news publication. Shoot him an email at kevin@knowtechie.com or find him on Mastodon or Post.

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