Selfie apps are extremely popular with younger smartphone users. For example, to bring photos with funny effects like make-up, animal ears and wild hairstyles. However, as is a recent study by “mobilicher.de”, the apps also sell the biometric data raised to third parties – without probably aware of most users.
A total of six of the most popular apps in the Google Play Store, which were downloaded together over 500 million times, has tested the portal. Specifically, these are:
- Photo Lab Image Editing (100 million + downloads)
- Youcam Makeup: Selfie Camera (100 million + downloads)
- BeautyPlus photo, Retusch, Filter (100 million + downloads)
- FaceApp: facial machining (100 million + downloads)
- Perfect 365: Face Makeup (50 million + downloads)
- Facetune2 (50 million + downloads)
Selfie apps in the test: partly passing on “extensive records”
The PFEFECT365 app suggests “mobileswer.de”, for example, that in the past year “extensive data sets to third parties” were – including the full name, biometric data, location data and all further information, the users in the app. In the consent menu after the installation, the data transmission is indicated, but concrete data types are not mentioned.
YouCam Makeup also refer to the data transfer. Among other things, even the skin condition of the users is transmitted here. The transfer of names, mail address, photos and videos is excluded from the developers. However, the test shows that it is likely to assume that at least the Meta Group (Facebook, Instagram) can assign usage data.
FACETUNE2 indicates not to collect biometric data. However, users are pointed out that generated data, such as age or gender, can be used for the application of the app services.
These apps give much less data
PHOTO LAB carries out its own information, the image processing on its own servers, where images and captured aspects are stored for 14 days. Although the information from the edited images can be used for advertising – a transmission to third parties therefore do not take place.
BeautyPlus also indicates that images are only processed on their own servers. After completing the app, these are deleted the developers directly again. A transfer to third parties is not here.
Striking: All selfie apps tested contain trackers and transmit data to companies like Facebook or Google. In addition, the advertising ID of the users is transferred to many services. This can be merged with data collected in other apps, which can give a very detailed image of the users.