The analytics company of Facebook released a new app this week meant to collect user data and package it up for Facebook as many of their products do.
Bolt App Lock as the app is called is made by the same company that created the VPN service Onavo Protect. The app was released on the 5th of March and was live till the 9th of March in the afternoon as it received little attention. Facebook pulled the app saying it was “a small, brief test.”
The Bolt App Lock allows one to add more security measures like PIN codes, fingerprint recognition, or patterns to apps you don’t want people to access effortlessly. as soon as Bolt is used to lock an app, Onavo will know how often a user unlocks the app, and a vital source of user data will be sent to Facebook. The app also gives report of general service and network information.
A lot of people dislike Onavo, known for the release of the Onavo Protect VPN service. Under a camouflage of personal security, the service collects user data and sends it back to Facebook. Facebook gained Onavo initially in 2013 to gain further knowledge of user data. Like any VPN, Onavo holds a very detailed view into the browsing activity of the users of the app, in effect, it serves as a middleman for all requests.
Bolt App Lock had the same disclosure about data collection at the bottom of its Google Play listing where it began, “We collect info about your mobile device and the apps installed on it.” It adds, “Because we’re part of Facebook, we also use this info to improve Facebook products.”
While Bolt App Lock didn’t have more than fifty installs in Google Play at the time it was published initially, it is easy to see the same kind of critiques hammered at it that have been associated with the VPN service Onavo Protect. The main audience for VPN services and app-locking apps are mostly those who wish to protect their privacy and data. It is uncertain how safe will they feel knowing their data is going directly to Facebook.