The risks of third-party app stores
Written by a NortonLifeLock employee
Sure, downloading apps from third-party sites—i.e. not the Apple Store, Android Market, or Blackberry App World—can be all kinds of tempting. However, to do so is to put your device, and therefore yourself, at risk.
Help protect your digital life on your devices.
Are you afraid of losing your personal information or all the precious things on your computer? Get comprehensive protection with Norton Security Deluxe across all your devices – up to 3 PCs, Macs, smartphones or tablets.
Create an account today and try it free for 30 days on up to 3 of your devices.
What Third-Party App Stores Do
Dangerous third-party app stores work via malicious advertising or even code.
The ads or codes are “injected” into popular apps users purchase through these stores instead of legitimate options. While not all third-party apps are “bad,” many stores bait users by offering popular apps for much cheaper prices, and subsequently put user privacy very much at risk. Examples of sensitive information extracted through third-party app stores include phone numbers, device information, and email addresses.
Third-party app stores aren’t restricted, meaning they aren’t controlled by the operating system owner. Such stores are attractive to developers because of this lack of restriction. Developers might target their audiences in ways they cannot through official app stores. Owners and operators of third-party app stores also note that developers get more exposure in the “niche” market a third-party option provides.
So how do you keep your device, and therefore your personal information, safe in a world full of third-party app stores and the developers who love them? It essentially comes down to common sense. For example, if you’re going to download an email attachment from a stranger to buy an app, you can pretty much expect to be hacked.
Taking advantage of quality security software is such as Norton Mobile Security is also an important measure that protects your device from malicious apps.
With Norton Mobile Security, you can use our app advisor to scan for "bad apps" before downloading them to your phone. Norton App Advisor is a special feature included with Norton Mobile Security. It prompts privacy risks, intrusive behavior of apps, excessive battery drainage and data plan usage. It also has call/sms blocking, anti-theft, contacts backup and protects your mobile phone form malware.
Don’t fall for the bells and whistles that come with third-party app stores.
Go for the trusted source, and stay safe!
Safety for every device.
Security is no longer a one-machine affair. You need a security suite that helps protect all your devices – your Windows PC, Mac, Android smartphone or your iPad.
Editorial note: Our articles provide educational information for you. NortonLifeLock offerings may not cover or protect against every type of crime, fraud, or threat we write about. Our goal is to increase awareness about cyber safety. Please review complete Terms during enrollment or setup. Remember that no one can prevent all identity theft or cybercrime, and that LifeLock does not monitor all transactions at all businesses.
Copyright © 2022 NortonLifeLock Inc. All rights reserved. NortonLifeLock, the NortonLifeLock Logo, the Checkmark Logo, Norton, LifeLock, and the LockMan Logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of NortonLifeLock Inc. or its affiliates in the United States and other countries. Firefox is a trademark of Mozilla Foundation. Android, Google Chrome, Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google, LLC. Mac, iPhone, iPad, Apple and the Apple logo are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc. Alexa and all related logos are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Microsoft and the Window logo are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the U.S. and other countries. The Android robot is reproduced or modified from work created and shared by Google and used according to terms described in the Creative Commons 3.0 Attribution License. Other names may be trademarks of their respective owners.