Hello . I have this situation. I installed the program, in this program I entered various queries into the search, for example: buy a PC. After that, I deleted this program from my phone and did not use it for some time. After that I decided to install this program again and I was very surprised that I saw my past search queries…
I tried changing android ID but it didn’t work…
What do I need to do to prevent the program from tracking me and collecting my data?
I understand that the best way is not to install it)) Perhaps there are other solutions, I would be grateful for advice…
Regain your privacy! Adopt /e/ the unGoogled mobile OS and online services
I assume options for help are limited unless you share more specific information on what “program” you are talking about…
edit: maybe it’s leftovers that were not deleted from previous install+deinstall in local filesystem and reused…(?)
For general check what tracking is happening you might log outgoing traffic (e.g. PCAPdroid), try dns-blocking (e.g. nextDNS) or Advanced Privacy’s Trackers Blocker or other tools alike.
It might be using your IP address to correlate the information, or use some other means of fingerprinting (for example which fonts you have installed, SSID of your most used wifi, list of apps you have installed…). Or maybe it’s something like the app using a system-provided web view and the cookies were not deleted with the app because they are part of the webview/browser. Really difficult to say without more information.
Aside from keeping the /e/ provided Advanced Privacy tracking blocker on, you can install a tracking blocker that has a more exhaustive list of tracking URLs, such as Tracker Control. You can also look at the log there to see what servers your app is trying to connect to. You could also add some blocking on the network level, such as PiHole, AdGuard Home or nextDNS.
And of course, don’t grant network access to apps that don’t need it, like for example a document scanning app.
@nanabanaman @obacht Hello .
Thank you very much for your answers and recommendations, they are very useful.
I think that @nanabanaman is right when he wrote that the application compares different data, such as IP, etc.
As for the application, it is not ethical, let’s assume that it is instgram. Obviously, if I installed such an application on my phone, I myself provide a lot of information, although I did not give any permissions (microphone, storage, calls, SMS, etc.)
In fact, there are many banking applications that are just as dangerous as in my case, they ask for a lot of permissions.
Okay, what are the possible protection scenarios?
- Do not install -ok, a radical option.
- Tracker Control (will show which trackers but this is just information)
4.nextDNS (Change DNS)
- Advanced Privacy (Change Location)
6.Pi-hole is a network-level advertisement and Internet tracker blocking application
It´d be helpful for You to know which tracking-technologies are used by that “program” - it all depends on your threat model.
And I think it is best to choose an option for protection that is practical and well enough understood (or skip the app).
You´ll find out which counter-measures (blocking, denying permissions etc.) will break the function that you want from that app. Then You can decide whether You are willing to accept that tradeoff or not.
There´s a few easy to do options that you can choose from for your local Android.
Note there´s only one VPN-interface available in your Android which means only one app can use that interface at a time, it´s either or, you have to choose.
As pointed out by @nanabanaman you can simply use Advanced Privacy’s Tracker Blocker and - utilizing the VPN-interface of Android - back that up with an app for DNS-based blocking (such as nextDNS, personalDNS, blokada or other apps alike.
That´ll be a good basic protection in my opinion.
There´s VPN-services that also offer integrated DNS-based tracker-blocking (these apps will require the VPN-interface of your Android). That will combine tracker+ads blocking and VPN. I can´t say whether a VPN-service is the tool to go with regards to tracking technology of that specific “program”.
Advanced Privacy also allows you to Fake Location and Hide my IP (the latter component will make use of the VPN-interface as well as of TOR-network which will slow down the connection), details see here
PiHole (adguard home etc.) is an option that will work only (if not configured for access via VPN) in your home-networks-environment but will also cover all other devices in your home-network. Whilst being in your home-wifi this would be more or less redundant with a DNS-blocking app on your phone.
There are surely expert-options with rooted phones or other apps or combinations of VPN+pihole etc. that others might be experienced with and willing to share…
I’d be curious to how the app in question does it. You say let’s assume instagram. I’d try. If you’re comfortable sharing the app name per private message I’ll check how it works. I kind of naively assume it were residual files left on-device after uninstall, but never checked uninstall behaviour in Android.
I would also be curious how it works.
However my expectation if I signed in (as it happens on a mobile app) to a data harvester, they will save anything “useful” as if they were money in a bank. That is they will “take care” of the data and not leave it lying around nor loose it.
So if I come back to the data harvester at any time in the future, by any means, and sign in I would expect that my data would be intact. I would expect the device to be more or less irrelevant.