5 Best Apps to Manage App Permissions on Android – MUO – MakeUseOf | Hot Mobile Press

Have you ever installed an app and found it suspicious when you asked for too many unnecessary permissions on the first run? This can be a potentially malicious app on your smartphone. Such apps can misuse data on Android devices to access potentially sensitive information.

Google gave users control over app permissions in Android 6, allowing them to choose what data a given app can access. But it’s not easy for everyone to manage them from Settings. Luckily, some apps can help make these settings easier for you. Let’s check out some of the best permissions manager apps for Android.

1. Bouncer

Bouncer is the best app for managing permissions on your Android device. It’s feature-rich and intuitive. It allows you to grant temporary permissions to any Android app to prevent them from abusing it. When an app asks for access to a permission, Bouncer pings you with a notification.

There are three options: Keep, Remove, and Schedule. That To keep option leaves the permission enabled, the Remove option revokes it, and the Schedule Option keeps it enabled for a specified time.

The best thing about Bouncer is that it revokes permission as soon as you leave the app. For example, if you give the camera access to Instagram, Bouncer will remove it as soon as you close Instagram. It allows you to keep all your apps installed on your phone and grant permissions only when needed.

Downloads: Bouncer ($1.99)

2. GlassWire

GlassWire is more of a privacy monitor than a permissions manager. It checks all apps using your internet data plan so you are not overwhelmed by your ISP or carrier. In addition, this ensures that none of them invade your privacy and helps extend the battery life of your Android device. Whenever it detects network activity, you will be notified.

You can block certain apps from connecting to the Internet until they are routed through GlassWire’s mobile firewall. In addition, GlassWire shows you a log of the apps that have accessed the internet. It’s an excellent way to check for suspicious activity when you’re not using it.

GlassWire claims it will never track you, serve ads, or use cellular or Wi-Fi data. So you don’t need to worry. It’s free to use with limited features, but you can upgrade it for $0.99 to get access to more features.

Downloads: GlassWire (free, in-app purchases available)

3. Privacy Dashboard

The privacy dashboard is similar to Android 12’s privacy dashboard in that it brings all of its features and more to older Android devices. The user interface is clean and easy to use.

It monitors all apps and usage of their permissions on your Android phone. Whenever an app tries to use sensitive permissions like camera, microphone or location, an indicator will appear in the top right corner.

You’ll also see a dashboard with a detailed permission usage page, and the privacy dashboard itself will ask for location and access permissions. It’s completely free, but you can choose to donate to the developer if you like their work.

Downloads: Privacy Dashboard (Free in-app purchases available)

4. App Permissions Manager

App Permission Manager is another way to manage permissions on your Android device. The user interface is good, but it takes some time to get used to it. It tells you which permissions granted pose a high risk of compromising your data and which do not. It categorizes the apps into four different sections: high-risk apps, medium-risk apps, low-risk apps, and no-risk apps.

High risk apps refers to apps that you have granted access to sensitive permissions such as contacts, which can be easily accessed once granted. Medium risk apps means sensitive permissions that are not as easily accessible as phone and camera. Low risk and No risk apps won’t affect you much, so you don’t have to worry about that.

Tap All apps shows you everything that’s installed on your phone, and next to each app you’ll see an icon that tells you whether the permissions granted are causing problems or not. Once you’ve selected an app, you can see all of its permissions and manage them on the same page. It is free to download but contains ads.

Downloads: App Permissions Manager (Free)

5. App Permission & Tracker

App Permission & Tracker lists all permissions and allows you to authorize and revoke them. Besides managing an app’s permissions, it shows the trackers that can monitor and collect data about your smartphone usage and compares it to different apps on your device.

Upon opening, you will see a minimal user interface and all apps (including the system apps) installed on your smartphone. Tapping one gives you more details about an app. You can install it for free, but the ads can intrude here and there.

Downloads: App Permission & Tracker (Free, Premium version available)

Don’t forget Android 12’s native privacy dashboard

If you have a phone running Android 12 or later, you can use the native privacy dashboard to manage permissions. You can access it by going inside Settings > Privacy > Privacy Dashboardwhere you can see all the permissions accessed by different apps on your phone.

Tapping on a specific permission will bring up all the apps they’ve used in the last 24 hours. Tap the Manage Permission button takes you to the administration page where you can revoke access.

The privacy dashboard is an excellent addition to Android, but it has limited capabilities for now. However, we expect new features in future Android versions that will further improve the privacy dashboard.

Take control of your app permissions

Android is an open source platform. Therefore, you need to take app permissions seriously, especially for camera, microphone, and your location.

The privacy controls in Android 12 have given you far more power to control apps and prevent them from accessing parts of your phone you don’t want. The apps listed above give you more control and also bring older versions of Android with them. They make granting permissions to apps much more secure.

However, these apps can track and access your sensitive data if ignored. We recommend that you revoke permissions on infrequently used apps to adequately protect your data.

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