I-Spy: Change your computer’s settings to stop programs spying on you


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Your phone knows a lot about you. It tracks your movement, browsing habits, downloads, and more. Go here for a trick to know when your phone’s camera or microphone is being used.

You also need to worry about social media apps, voice assistants, and smart TVs from listening and recording what you have to say. Tap or click for steps to put a stop to it.

Phone apps ask permission to access your camera, mic, and location. You can go into your phone’s settings to grant or restrict these permissions. Did you know you can do the same for your PC or Mac? Here’s how.

close up of hands of business person working on computer, man using internet and social media
(iStock)

How to change app permissions on Windows

Windows has a Privacy page where you can fiddle with your app permissions. It just takes a few clicks.

Change app permissions on Windows 11

  • Go to Start > Settings > Privacy & security.
  • Under App permissions, select an option (for example, Location). Then choose which apps can access it.
  • You can also use the Recent activity dropdown menu for each permission to show which apps are accessing them.

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Change app permissions on Windows 10

  • Go to Start > Settings > Privacy.
  • Under App permissions, select an option (for example, Microphone). Then choose which apps can access it.

There are many permissions on the list, including access to your calendar, files and folders, email, music library, notifications, and webcam. Consider whether an app truly needs the access level it requests by default.

See a complete list of app permissions and what they allow access to here.

RELATED: If you have this popular file program on your Mac, delete it now.

Typing on laptop closeup, chatting in Facebook, meeting website. Blogger, journalist writing new article.

Typing on laptop closeup, chatting in Facebook, meeting website. Blogger, journalist writing new article.
(iStock)

How to change app permissions on macOS

You receive an alert when a third-party app tries to access and control your Mac…


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