Pandora “Steals” Your Information

You have to watch these dirty buggers! In case you didn’t notice, Pandora on Android just updated to version 1.5.17. This is all fine and good except for one thing. Did you notice this:

This is a screenshot of the permissions, particularly the personal information permissions, requested by Pandora.

Apparently, it’s of utmost importance for the application to access your calendar, email, and read contact data. Why? I have no idea. Pandora offers this explanation.

This is causing all sorts of issues (check out the user reviews) and uproar – as well it should.

I can’t think of any reason why Pandora radio would need to see my calendar, email, or contact data, unless there was some attempt to market to your friends and colleagues.

This is one reason it’s important for you to review permissions before accepting them.

Me, I chose to accept the upgrade, only because I mistakenly pressed the button.

Remember, behind every good app is one single motivation: money. Pandora generates its revenue from subscriptions (I don’t know anyone who subscribes) and advertising (those annoying full-screen pop-ups that run in the app). Pandora is likely formulating a marketing spam plan to target users and possibly connect them into music “circles.”

Interestingly enough, these same permission requests have been going on since at least 2010. It’s nothing new, but I think more people are fired up about it because this time the app required a manual update.

2 Responses to Pandora “Steals” Your Information

  1. haha, it doesn’t steal any information. Some is needed to run an OS and ANDROID and google are probably bigger than CIA in gather info about you and know you better than your mom so stay to your droid 🙂

    • Jimmy, you’re right. The Pandora app does request permission to access particular parts of the Android OS, including your contact information and personal contacts. With the revelation about the NSA’s gathering project, and Google’s extensive datamining, it’s likely that Google and the US government know more about you than your mother.

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Jeff Taylor

I’m just an ordinary guy living an extraordinary life. I’m also an attorney and I blog about Android for lawyers. You can follow me on Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, or Google+.