Why does Google need access to my contacts for me to use USAA mobile banking app?

When I was using my USAA app, Google wanted access to my contact list and phone. This isn't the first time Google has infiltrated a bank. Google will access my camera when using Chase banking. The lack of security on all this is deeply concerning.

8 REPLIES

Thank you for bringing your concerns to us this morning @Advocate4USA, I will be sure to share with the appropriate area. We always value feedback from members like yourself who are keen on offering us ways to better assist our members in the future. If additional information is needed we may reach out to you, we appreciate your patience in advance. Have a great day! -Emily

G created and still owns Android, the base software that runs your phone.  Why does it want access to the camera?  To use the mobile deposit feature where you have to take a picture of the check.  Contacts is likely the same thing ...  the bank software needs to be able to make notifications and that may be done though the same base functions you use for messaging.

 

It isn't that they want your contact list or to watch you on your camera.

Actually I believe Android was created as an open-source mobile OS startup, and given the name Android Inc. It was only later that Google acquired it and started adding its proprietary pieces. (According to Wikipedia)

@RRR1, Thanks for adding your voice to the conversation :) ~JD

You might be interested in using a tracker-blocker app like Blokada or TrackerControl. You can prevent unwanted tracking by components of the OS or by individual apps. Loading one or more of the default blocklists will usually take care of most trackers while still maintaining functionality. Be aware that blocking some connections might cause app to not work, though. If that happens you can enable manually.

WHY are you even using Google products?  Google has gone to the dark side and monitors and reports everything you do on their platforms.  Google is completely anti-American, and functioning more like Chinese Communists run the show  (apparently, the Chi-Coms do tell Google how to run their business).  Google needs to be broken up and put out of business, but our politicians have sold out for MONEY, of course.

Unfortunately, choices for mobile phones now are limited to the Google and Apple duopoly, both of which are guilty of monopolistic control and serious privacy abuses (and increasing all the time). Even "dumbphones" aren't viable anymore, due to the fact that 3G is shutting down everywhere.

 

Fortunately, new pure Linux privacy-focused phones are being developed (Purism's Librem 5, Pine64's Pinephone), but it will take some time for those to be suitable as replacements.

 

In my opinion, the best option right now is a de-Googled Android phone, running one of the more private custom ROMs, for instance, /e/OS from /e/ Foundation, and using F-Droid open-source apps instead of Google's store.

@RRR1, thank you for your input.  I am happy to ensure this is reviewed by the appropriate area.  Have a great weekend!