Stalkerware is apps for mobiles that allow tracking of the device. Expected legitimate usage of these apps would be associated with parents wanting to track the whereabouts of their children. However, the app is often repurposed by adults to snoop on spouses, more often than not, without permission.

Google has recently taken a stance against these applications and has attempted to remove them from all Google platform search results; however current search results suggest the block actions by Google have not been very effective as simple search results return a plethora of Stalkerware. The popularity of the app has even spread to ads on websites and within other mobile applications which Google has again retaken a stance against, but are struggling to prevent such ads from appearing.

Taking a moment to think beyond the GDPR and data protection nightmare that would ensue if you were found to be using such apps, consider who these apps are being created by and where they’re storing the information. Are the apps free in the first place? Well then if you’re not paying for the product, you are the product, or specifically, your data is.

KidsGuard, an example of these Stalkerware apps, boasts that it can “monitor everything” on a victims phone, and has been found to be installed to thousands of phones providing access to real-time location reports, text message and browser history, photos, videos and other app activities. A recent discovery in the misconfiguration of one of KidsGuard’s servers proved that the data was spilling out across the internet.

Think twice before installing the latest trending apps, and if in doubt, please contact us so we can run some background checks on any applications you’re considering the use of and talk you through our findings.