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Are Our Pets Leaking Information About Us?

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Said Scott Harper of Newcastle University's School of Computing, "Pet tech such as smart collars and GPS trackers for your cat or dog, is a rapidly growing industry and it brings with it new security, privacy, and safety risks to the pet owners."


Computer scientists at the U.K.'s Newcastle University and Royal Holloway, University of London found security and privacy vulnerabilities among 40 Android applications for pets and farm animals such as wearable global positioning system trackers, automatic feeders, and pet cameras.

Analysis revealed several apps leak owners' login or location details, including three that exposed login credentials in plain text within non-secure HTTP traffic.

Thirty-six apps use tracking software, but the researchers said the apps do not notify users of their privacy policy very well. Advised Newcastle's Scott Harper, "We would urge anyone using these apps to take the time to ensure they are using a unique password, check the settings, and ensure that they consider how much data they are sharing or willing to share."

From Newcastle University (U.K.)

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