Android App Permissions

All common or non-dangerous permissions are in green. Some possibly risky permissions are in yellow. Dangerous ones can be in orange or red. System-only are blue. You can use Ctrl + F to quickly find text on a page.

ACCESS_CHECKIN_PROPERTIES

This permission is only for use in system applications. Installing a third-party application with this permission is not recommended.

ACCESS_COARSE_LOCATION

Apps can use this permission to approximate your location using either cell phone towers or Wi-Fi. Both of these services usually return a location about one mile away from your actual location.

ACCESS_FINE_LOCATION

In addition to cell phone towers and Wi-Fi, this permission allows apps to use a built-in GPS to target an accurate location. If your device does not have a built-in GPS, this permission should be treated like the ACCESS_COARSE_LOCATION permission.

ACCESS_LOCATION_EXTRA_COMMANDS

If you have a slow GPS, this permission allows the memory cache to be cleared (in addition to accessing your fine location). Again, this permission should be treated like the ACCESS_COARSE_LOCATION if you have no GPS.

ACCESS_MOCK_LOCATION

This permission allows you to set a mock location, which means you can fool apps trying to read your GPS location by giving a false location. Note that this can be used to read as well as write your GPS location.

ACCESS_NETWORK_STATE

This is a permission that allows an application to see if they are connected via Bluetooth, Ethernet, Mobile, Wi-Fi, or Wimax as well as get notified if a connection is made or terminated. No connections can be made or intercepted.

ACCESS_SURFACE_FLINGER

This system permission allows full control of SurfaceFlinger, used to buffer frames, displaying the graphics on your screen. It should only be present in system apps.

ACCESS_WIFI_STATE

This is a very common permission that allows an application to s ee if it is connected to a wireless router and read the SSIDs (names) of all the routers within the range of the device. It cannot change or connect to routers or read any passwords from the routers. The router’s speed and the device’s MAC address can also be obtained.

ACCOUNT_MANAGER

With this, apps can call into Account Authenticators. This should only be present in system apps.

ADD_VOICEMAIL

Allows an application to add voicemails into the system.

AUTHENTICATE_ACCOUNTS

This permission is one of the strongest permissions any app can get access to. Using this permission, an app can retrieve or update an account password, retrieve an account authentication token and even create new accounts.

BATTERY_STATS

Allows an application to collect battery statistics. There is a controversy between system/dangerous as to what the app can do, so I’d recommend only installing well-rated battery-related apps with this permission.

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