The mobile app market has been growing around the world with the growth of internet and smartphone usage. As a developer, though, there is one growing concern, and that is security threats and mobile app privacy. You have no choice but to factor in the security aspect of the application with hackers nowadays are targeting mobile apps to gain access to critical information. Let us look at some of the simple privacy features that can help you protect your business and user safety from cybercrime.
Avail data privacy label
When developing an app, it is crucial to have the user’s data in mind. Of course, your app will inevitably require data to function as intended. As a result, it becomes necessary for you to determine the data that you request from the potential user.
Besides, you will need to avail of an explicit data policy and terms and conditions for the use of the data submitted. This accountability and openness with the app user are necessary as it helps prevent liability in case of a data breach. It also offers the app users an opportunity to engage with the developer in case they have questions regarding the data policy.
Granular controls for data sharing
As a developer, you should give the app user more control of the content they choose to share. You can do so by developing an app that visualizes the sophisticated privacy options available when sharing data. This will make it possible for the user to understand and control their data.
For example, an app user should be in a position to choose whether to share with a person, group, public, or not share the data at all. Besides, there should be an option for the user to decide whether to share their location while using a particular app or turn it off completely. In a nutshell, give the user more granular control over the data your app collects from their mobile phone.
Ensure users can opt-in and out of data sharing preferences
Secure app using HTTPS
Users want safe app environments where they can interact with your services without a third party snitching on them. While developing your app, you need to have encryption in mind. One way you can protect data stored within apps is by using HTTPS for data transfer.
HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) is designed for secure communications over computer networks like the internet. There are many SSL certificate providers in the market that you can use depending on the features you are looking for. For a mobile app, you can obtain and integrate SSL certificates like Thawte Code Signing Certificate on your app communication infrastructure. This ensures that the code is not altered since it is signed and, the user can safely download the app/software. The encryption can be used to protect:
- Files on servers
- Email communication
- Entire communications; that go through the app.
Local storage security
Local storage is part of a file system where media files, setting files, and other files are stored. Securing this stored data means preventing unauthorized access as well as preventing accidental or intentional destruction or corruption of the files.
As a developer, you should understand threats in local storage then create appropriate layers of defence. For instance, you can monitor activity logs and obfuscate code used in building the app to conceal its purposes or implicit values in a way that hackers find it hard to tamper with the app.
Web content filtering feature
If your app uses Web views to display data to the end-user, then you need to implement web content-control features on the app. This will help you, and even the mobile app user to control external content to be displayed on the app. The need for this feature is basically in the prevention of attacks like phishing and malware that could be used by hackers to corrupt the files and steal data via your app. So, make sure you create restrictions on what can be displayed on the app and what content should be blocked. This is a nice and simple way to ensure the app is safe from access or tampering by malicious third parties.
Another right way to secure an app is to give the user informed options on whether or not to allow your app to access critical data on their phones. Your app permissions should be set in such a way that the user can be able to determine the data they want to share as they install your app. For example, the user should decide if the app can access photos, music, location, or even contacts.
This feature is there to help prevent unauthorized parties from taking advantage of your permissions to access user data. It also gives the user the room to make informed decisions when it comes to transferring data back and forth the app.
In a nutshell, data security is an integral part when it comes to the development of mobile applications, particularly in the business world. Always keep in mind that the increasing adoption of mobile phones has also provided a huge avenue for hackers to steal data and use them for malice. Your mobile app users are your responsibility, and any breach can destroy your business. That is why you, as a developer, you should give priority to the security and privacy features as you design your apps.
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