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Because of the recent update to Google play stores permissions, I wish that as apps can access very personal information, I want to deny permissions to the apps, but as I have heard that this might cause them to crash, I want to give fake data to the apps Eg. IMEI = 0123654789, so that the apps do not crash.

I am running the Xperia X10i original stock ROM, rooted. I want to do it without flashing a custom ROM.

I appreciate any help.

  • 1
    What you're looking for is called permission manager. There are several of them available; just check the linked list, and also the links to further information following it. Furthermore, a look into our permissions tag-wiki gives you good hints. – Izzy Jun 27 '14 at 15:16
  • @Izzy I want an a that will not deny the rights but give fake information to the apps, because of the risk that they might crash. Do you know anything like that? – Sanoo Jun 28 '14 at 16:15
  • Just follow the link. With Android < 4.1, I use LBE Privacy Guard (with 4.1+ it just causes boot-loops). The linked list also has references for most apps to reviews etc. you could check. Alternatively, ask your question at Software Recommendations, but make sure your question meets the quality guidelines to not be closed straight away ;) – Izzy Jun 28 '14 at 17:03
  • @Izzy It seems that LBE Privacy guard can only deny permissions, not give fake permissions to apps. Do you know how to make it give fake data eg: IMEI is 01234567890, Network not connected, GPS location in the Sahara etc...? – Sanoo Jun 29 '14 at 5:26
  • It works for me. No app ever crashed for "revoked permissions". And I'm using LBE for several years already. I guess while the toasts show something like "rejected SniffingApp IMEI access", LBE in fact did mean "rejected access to the REAL IMEI, gave it a fake instead" – which would be a little long for a toast :) – Izzy Jun 29 '14 at 11:31
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What you're looking for is called "Permission Manager". While Android itself does not (yet?) provide such itself, there are several of them available, my list holds some of them.

There are different approaches. While some simply "deny access" (which might cause an app to crash, if the dev didn't take "revoked"/"not granted" permissions into account, and didn't place an exception handler for those cases), the majority rather replaces "real data" by "fake ones". Examples:

  • network access: "we are currently offline"
  • contacts, calendar: "the user has none" (empty list)
  • IMEI: "0123456789" (sometimes a total random number on each call, but other times a random IMEI is generated after each boot)
  • location: "not available" (location services deactivated) or "fake location" (e.g. north pole; some apps even allow to set your desired "fake location" and simulate movement in a specified radius)

A selection of popular "Permission managers" includes:

  • PDroid/OpenPDroid: Effective, but hard to install. Both require root and ed ROM, AFAIK OpenPDroid is even limited to
  • LBE Privacy Guard: proprietary solution made in China, which might raise some eyebrows. Works great up to Android ; don't install with higher versions as it will only stick your device in a then. Root required.
  • LBE Security Manager: Successor of Privacy Guard, works with all current Android versions. Playstore version is in Chinese only; patched versions are available at XDA for other languages. Some feel this one a little overloaded, as it wants to be an all-in-one security suite covering a lot of stuff not everybody needs. Root required.
  • Xprivacy: A module to the Xposed framework. Gives very granular control, but other than LBE you cannot configure it to "ask everytime" whether access should be allowed (a feature I love about LBE). Root required.
  • App Ops: With , Android had some permission management integrated but hidden from the user. There are several "App Ops" front-ends available, not all of them require root. Not all of them keep working with , though, where this feature was "better protected". Not that granular, but much better than nothing if your device is not rooted.

Above mentioned list holds several more, but these are the best known. I personally use LBE Privacy Guard on my devices running or lower. No app ever crashed on me for "disabled permissions", so LBE IMHO uses the "fake permissions" approach. Same AFAIK applies to the other solutions I've mentioned here.

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