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It's not just Facebook - here's what data your other favourite apps are tracking

This is quite scary, isn't it

It's not just Facebook - here's what data your other favourite apps are tracking
27 March 2018

We’ve always been a bit suspicious of big tech companies and how much data they’ve been keeping on us. But the issue exploded into the forefront of public consciousness recently after the revelations from The Guardian’s investigation into the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica scandal.

But this made us wonder: what about our other favourite apps? What incriminating information do they have about us? Here’s everything we know…


Calls - Who you’ve talked to on your cell and for how long

Chat - A history of the conversations you’ve had on Facebook Chat (a complete history is available directly from your messages inbox)

Check-ins - The places you’ve checked into

Credit Cards - If you make purchases on Facebook (ex: in apps) and have given Facebook your credit card number

Facial Recognition Data - A unique number based on a comparison of the photos you’re tagged in. They use this data to help others tag you in photos

IP Addresses - A list of IP addresses where you’ve logged into your Facebook account (won’t include all historical IP addresses as they are deleted according to a retention schedule)

Phone Numbers - Mobile phone numbers you’ve added to your account, including verified mobile numbers you’ve added for security purposes

Political Views - Any information you added to Political Views in the About section of Timeline

Searches - Searches you’ve made on Facebook


Basic Account Information - Name, username, password, email address, or phone number

Address book – If you choose to upload and sync your address book, Twitter may later personalise content, such as making suggestions or showing user accounts and Tweets for you and other users, based on imported address book contacts

Tweets, Following, Lists, Profile, and Other Public Information – Profile information such as a short biography, your location, your website, date of birth, or a picture. Additionally, your public information includes the messages you Tweet; the metadata provided with Tweets, such as when you Tweeted and the client application you used to Tweet; information about your account, such as creation time, language, country, and time zone; and the lists you create, people you follow, Tweets you Like or Retweet, and Periscope broadcasts you click or otherwise engage with (such as by commenting or hearting) on Twitter

Direct Messages and Non-Public Communications - When you privately communicate with others, such as by sending and receiving Direct Messages, Twitter will store and process your communications, and information related to them

Location Information - Twitter may receive information about your location if you choose to publish your location in your Tweets and in your Twitter profile. They may also determine location by using other data from your device, such as precise location information from GPS, information about wireless networks or cell towers near your mobile device, or your IP address

Log Data – Could include IP address, browser type, operating system, the referring web page, pages visited, location, your mobile carrier, device information (including device and application IDs), search terms, or cookie information


Basic Account Information - Your username, password and e-mail address when you register for an Instagram account. Also your first and last name, picture and phone number

User Content - Photos, comments, and other materials that you post to the Service

Analytics information – Instagram uses third-party analytics tools to help measure traffic and usage trends. These tools collect information sent by your device or their service, including the web pages you visit, add-ons, and other information


Information you provide - In order to register as a user with Tinder, you will be asked to sign in using your Facebook login. If you do so, you authorise them to access certain Facebook account information, such as your public Facebook profile, your email address, interests, likes, gender, birthday, education history, relationship interests, current city, photos, personal description, friend list, and information about and photos of your Facebook friends who might be common Facebook friends with other Tinder users

Information collected automatically - Tinder automatically collects information from your browser or device when you visit them. This information could include your IP address, device ID and type, your browser type and language, the operating system used by your device, access times, your mobile device’s geographic location while Tinder is actively running, and the referring website address

Cookies - Through the use of a cookie, Tinder also may automatically collect information about your activity, such as the pages you visit, the time and date of your visits and the links you click


Profile - Information on your profile, such as your education, work experience, skills, photo, city or area and endorsements

Posting and Uploading - Personal data from you when you provide, post or upload it to LinkedIn, such as when you fill out a form, respond to a survey, submit a resume and apply for or save jobs or send invitations. If you opt to import your address book, they receive your contacts

Your Device and Location – When you visit or leave LinkedIn, they receive the URL of both the site you came from and the one you go to next. They also get information about your IP address, proxy server, operating system, web browser and add-ons, device identifier and features, and/or ISP or your mobile carrier. If you use it from a mobile device, that device will send data about your location

Messages - They collect information about you when you send, receive, or engage with messages


Personal information - Name, email address, telephone number or credit card to store with your account

Device information - Hardware model, operating system version, unique device identifiers, and mobile network information including phone number)

Log information - Details of how you used the service, such as your search queries; telephony log information, such as your phone number, calling-party number, forwarding numbers, time and date of calls, duration of calls, SMS routing information and types of calls

Internet protocol address - Device event information, such as crashes, system activity, hardware settings, browser type, browser language, the date and time of your request and referral URL

Location information - When you use Google services, they may collect and process information about your actual location. They use various technologies to determine location, including IP address, GPS and other sensors that may, for example, provide Google with information on nearby devices, Wi-Fi access points and mobile towers


Basic information - The unique username you go by, a password, an email address, a phone number and your date of birth

Content - Whatever information you send through the services, such as Snaps and Chats to your friends

Usage information - How you interact with Snapchat, such as which Filters you view or apply to Snaps, which channels you watch on Discover, or which search queries you submit

How you communicate with other Snapchatters - Their names, the time and date of your communications, the number of messages you exchange with your friends, which friends you exchange messages with the most, and your interactions with messages (such as when you open a message or capture a screenshot)

Content information - They collect content you create, such as custom stickers, and information about the content you create or provide, such as if the recipient has viewed the content and the metadata that is provided with the content

Device information - Information about your hardware and software, such as the hardware model, operating system version, device memory, advertising identifiers, unique application identifiers, apps installed, unique device identifiers, browser type, language, battery level and time zone. Also, they collect information from device sensors, such as accelerometers, gyroscopes, compasses, microphones and headphone connection. Finally, they monitor information about your wireless and mobile network connections, such as mobile phone number, service provider and signal strength

Camera and photos – You won’t be able to send Snaps or upload photos from your camera roll unless they can access your camera or photos

Location information - When you use Snapchat, they may collect information about your location. With your consent, they may also collect information about your precise location using methods that include GPS, wireless networks, cell towers, Wi-Fi access points and other sensors such as gyroscopes, accelerometers and compasses

Log information – Device information, such as your web browser type and language, access times, pages viewed, IP address, identifiers associated with cookies or other technologies that may uniquely identify your device or browser and pages you visit before or after navigating to our website

(Images: Unsplash / Getty)