Sneaky snake game spies on Android owners

An Android game called Tapsnake could be used to spy on the movements of smartphone users according to insecurity outfit Symantec.

The free game, which uses the same basic game elements as the original 70s arcade game Tron and a thousand snake-based clones, appears to be harmless but the bug-busting outfit has discovered that the Android OS app actually gathers GPS data on the location of the handset and reports it to another application called GPS Spy.

The paid-for application must be installed on a second Android device and reports the location of the spied-on phone in 15 minute increments over a 24-hour period without notifying the owner in any way.

Which is all well and good if you are a parent who wants to keep an eye on their child's movements, but the opportunities for abuse are blindingly obvious.

So if your jealous partner offers to install a great new game on your Android smartphone for you, don't be surprised if he or she knows exactly where you are at any given time.