Free and Paid Apps Pose Risks for the Enterprise

By Karen A. Frenkel  |  Posted 05-07-2014 Email

Paid apps exhibit less risky behavior than free ones, but downloading only paid apps is not sure-fire protection for users, according to "Appthority Winter 2014 Reputation Report," a new study by Appthority. The report finds that 80 percent of the top 200 paid apps exhibited at least one risky behavior. The biggest disparity between free and paid apps is location tracking, the report said, followed by accessing the owner's address book or contact list. Furthermore, Apple's iOS is often considered safer than Android's open platform, but that's not always the case. Ninety-one percent of iOS apps showed at least one risky behavior compared to 83 percent of Android apps. The report noted that the top paid 100 titles remained "more stable than the top 100 free titles, which experienced greater churn." The result: Developers who break into the top 100 paid apps have more staying power and brand recognition than when their apps are free. Appthority analyzed 400 apps: the top 100 free apps and 100 paid apps for both iOS and Android. (Apple and Google provided the apps.) The Winter 2014 findings were then compared against data collected in the July 2013 report. To read the report (registration required), click here.

Karen A. Frenkel writes about technology and innovation and lives in New York City.


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