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FREE APPS: What do they really cost you?

BALTIMORE (WBFF)--With 5 children, the Stewarts have a busy household ... And it's no doubt that at any given time you'll find the kids connected to their technology ...

From smartphones to social media apps like facebook and instagram.

But most people don't realize what they give up . Who really reads the full terms of agreement when they create social media accounts or download apps on their phone?

"They're sharing their activities with what they feel is their friends, but that data and that information is being collected by these social media platforms."

Technologist Todd Jennings with Clearview Consulting Group says within those pages sites like facebook tell you that by using their platform, you're giving them permission to access and collect all kinds of data about you.

Everything from what you post to what others post about you, your pictures, your location through your GPS, Bluetooth and WIFI signals. Your address book and all your contact's information, payment information like debit and credit cards, text messages and even your microphone.

Are they using that information to spy on you? Not likely because they know they'd lose users.

But they do use the information collected to "personalize your experience" and get paid.

Facebook is a free application like many of these social media platforms, they make their revenue off of advertising. So the data is important to these social media platforms to learn who you are, your demographics, your income, what type of activities, where do you eat when you go out

So how do you guard as much of your privacy and data as you can?

Be wary of any free apps and games that you play. Actually read the terms of agreement.

When it comes to social media platforms, check your settings.

1. Manage your ad preferences

2. Turn off location services unless you're on facebook

3. Revoke facebook permissions for apps you no longer use

4. Change privacy settings to control who sees your posts

5. And conduct a privacy checkup, to see what's being shared through your account

And if you really want all of your information deleted without being able to be shared further then delete is what you'll have to do to your account.

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