More than 19,000 apps have been found potentially unsafe safe by digital security company Avast. Vulnerabilities in the apps could even leak your personal data and can put your smartphone’s security at risk.
The vulnerability in most of the apps exists due to a crucial misconfiguration. The digital security firm said that more than 19,300 Android apps could be exposing their user data to the public as a result of a misconfiguration in the Firebase database.
For those uninitiated, Firebase is tool used by Android developers to store user data. In a statement, Avast said that data exposed can include personally identifiable information (PII) collected by the apps, such as names, addresses, location data, and in some cases even passwords.
“Avast notified Google of its findings so they could inform app developers to take corrective action,” the company added. Some of the apps that could be facing the issue in the misconfiguration are related to lifestyle, gaming, food delivery and email, among others.
Users in regions are Europe, South-East Asia and Latin America are said to have been impacted the most by the issue. Researchers at the Avast Threat Labs had tested more than 180,300 publicly available Firebase instances to check for issues.
In their research, they found that more than 10% of the instances were open. An open instance means that the apps’ users’ data has been exposed to the public.