New 'protect' feature on Facebook actually installs spyware on iPhone and iPad

Facebook introduced a new protection feature to its application users for iOS called Protect. The name attracts unsuspecting users to install the free app. This is nothing more than a VPN owned by Facebook. The network is designed to collect and analyze user data in order to 'improve the quality of products and services Facebook'.


The fact is that Facebook acquired the Onavo security software company back in 2013. Thus, it is this social network that owns the application for iOS called Onavo Protect, modestly hiding in the application settings Facebook under the Protect label ('Protection').

While users are downloading a VPN application to gain the promised 'peace of mind' and 'extra layer of security', the company Facebook collects and analyzes user data to improve its own service – goods and services.

Let's take a look at the description of the program. Only after a paragraph with information about the protection provided by Onavo, and a few paragraphs describing the operation of the service, the company warns that the software is essentially spyware. This information is discreetly hidden under the additional link 'More' both in the App Store itself and in the English version of the iTunes website. It should be noted that in the translated version of the site (in Russian) this warning is currently absent at all.

As part of this level of protection, Onavo uses a VPN to establish a secure connection to manage all of your network communications through Onavo's servers. During this process, Onavo collects your mobile data traffic. This helps us improve and optimize the Onavo services by analyzing your use of websites, applications and data. As a part of Facebook, we also use this data to improve the quality of products and services Facebook, obtain information about products and services that users value, and improve the experience.

While some might be comfortable with exchanging their privacy for a free VPN client, many users probably don't even know that Onavo Protect is a specialized spyware Facebook and may fall into a marketing trap social network – both in the settings of the application itself Facebook and on App Store.

It is known that the Onavo Protect program has already been installed by 33 million users, among which the owners of iPhone and iPad account for 38%, while the remaining 62% are owners of Android – devices.

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