Bitdefender Relaunches Clueful, The Service That Spies On Your iPhone Apps

The security company Bitdefender has today relaunched the Clueful app online, a database which can provide information on other apps on your iPhone that utilize your own personal data. The database is constructed from an analysis of over 100,000 free apps and examines applications that can result in personal data being transmitted to third parties. These include apps that upload address book data, upload your iPhone UDID, location tracking and apps that can access the calendar.

Clueful has had rather an eventful past, after the iOS version of the app was removed from the iOS App Store by Apple, after initially approving it. The reasons behind the removal were a little mysterious, but from the data gathered as a result of the Clueful apps initial release, several interesting pieces of information were found. It was noted that, out of 60,000 popular iOS apps, up to 42.5% do not encrypt user’s personal data when transmitting it over a public Wi-Fi connection and over 40% of the apps studied can track a users location.

The original version of the app was on sale for $4 but use of the database is free initially. Unlike the original iOS app which scanned all the apps on your iPhone and then gave you a report of each one, this online database means that you manually have to search for the data on a given app. This is perhaps less creepy for some people than getting your apps scanned by another app.  Obviously, the relaunch of the data means that you can go on and check out some of the apps that you use on a daily basis.

The relaunch doesn’t mean that Clueful will reappear on the App Store, rather via the new online database that behaves like an app.

Of course, it is worth noting that Apple has made some substantial changes in the latest version of its iOS operating system, iOS 6, which is expected to be launched in the Fall.  The new OS has some significant security updates, including requesting user permission before any app accesses personal data such as Contacts, Calendars and Photo Library.  How this will line up alongside Clueful remains to be seen.

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