How daycare apps can spy on parents and children

Daycare apps are designed to make everyday life in daycare centers easier. Parents can use them, for example, to access reports on their children’s development and to communicate with teachers. However, some of these applications have serious security flaws. This is the conclusion reached by researchers from Ruhr-Universität Bochum (RUB), Westfälische Hochschule and the Max Planck Institute for Security and Privacy in Bochum, in collaboration with an industry partner. They analyzed 42 daycare apps from Europe and the U.S. with regard to security and privacy. In some apps, they were able to access private photos of the children; several apps accessed users’ personal data without consent and shared them with third parties.

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