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Security & privacy

Do this to see how much access your apps have to your computer

Your phone knows a lot about you. It tracks your movement, browsing habits, downloads and more. And it gets worse. How do you know when you’re being recorded? Tap or click here for a trick to know when your phone’s camera or microphone is being used.

You’ve seen the pop-ups when installing apps asking for permission to access your phone’s 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? That’s right — the apps on your computer don’t differ much from the ones on your phone. Here’s how to get a handle on your privacy and show your apps who’s boss!

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.

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. Go to Microsoft’s support page to learn more about each one.

RELATED: Update your PC! New Windows update fixes six zero-day flaws hackers are using

How to change app permissions on macOS

You receive an alert when a third-party app tries to access and control your Mac through accessibility features. You must specifically grant the app access to your Mac in Privacy & Security settings.

You can go into your settings to change permissions at any time. Here’s how:

  • Open the Apple menu and choose System Settings > Privacy & Security.
  • A list of program permissions will appear on screen, such as Location Services, showing which applications have access to which permissions.
  • Click on any permission to see the apps that have access to it. Use the toggle switch to turn off permissions for each app.

You may also like: This simple Android location setting saves your privacy

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