Security concerns raised over Pokemon Go app

Posted at 10:15 PM, Jul 12, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-13 08:40:50-04

SALT LAKE CITY -- An unpopular drawback has been discovered in a new game that has captured the attention of millions.

For those who have fallen into the augmented realty of Pokemon Go, they have unwittingly given the game’s developers access to everything on their Gmail account.

But just because the developer had the access didn't mean they used it.

In a five-day frenzy, millions have downloaded Pokemon Go. When users signed up with their Gmail account they granted full access to all their information.

“Many don’t read the fine print of what can be done with that data,” said Daniel Bowden, Chief Information Security Officer of University of Utah.

Bowden said the app is a game changer but he sees the problems with people protecting data and privacy when they sign up.

“It had access to basically all of their Google account and data information,” Bowden said.

Tuesday afternoon, the creators of the app issued a statement saying the game collects only "basic" information like user ID and address. The Pokemon Go app has also been updated to have a less intrusive grip on Google account permissions.

“When it first comes out it’s bound to have some growing pains for people to be aware of,” Bowden said.

Despite those growing pains most users don’t care about the access.

“I wasn’t really concerned there’s nothing on that Gmail account I would be worried about them taking,” said Annie Eldridge. “Heaven forbid they get like my online shopping wish list.”

Security experts also warn players to make sure they're not downloading a look alike app on their phone and to read the privacy permissions before downloading and watch out for hackers.

You can check your security access and read the privacy statement here