i'm really wondering and can't find answer. Google Play from the store every downloaded apps want to access photos. Permission content read the contents of your usb, modify or delete the contents of your usb storage

My question is, can the application copy and send the photos to the application owner if they want? They are virus-free applications available in the official store I am talking about.

My device is an Xiaomi Android tv box running Android 9.


1 Answer 1


What you are looking at is the static permission to get read/write access to the shared storage (/sdcard respectively /storage/emulated/0).

Since about Android 6 this static permission you grant by installing the app is no longer enough for actually accessing the files on the shared storage. Instead the app has to additionally ask you to get access to those files at run-time. And this time you can chose to deny access. Additionally apps usually ask for this permission at that time when they really need it. This means if access to shared storage is only required for one functionality you never use you should not see this permission request dialog and thus the app never gets access to the shared storage.

But if you get this permission request and you allow it then the app has full access to ever file on shared storage including your stored photos. An app can do anything it want with files it has access to, including sending them to a server in the internet.

Google also recognized that "all-or-nothing permission" was not a good decision. Starting with Android 10/11 the way to access devices shared storage has totally changed and now allows to grant/deny access on a finer granular level.

  • Thank you very much for your explanatory, instructive important comment. May 18, 2021 at 8:54

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