Warning: *privacy not included with this product
Review date: April 20, 2022
What could happen if something goes wrong?
Yikes Youper! When you say you're "the only mental health service that understands you," it seems maybe you mean that literally.
Not only does Youper collect a ton of personal information, they say they can share this personal information with a number of subsidiaries, affiliates, and third parties, including for marketing purposes. Now, not all that personal information can be used or shared with third parties for things like marketing purposes -- they say personal health information won't be shared with third parties for marketing purposes without your consent, for example. But a lot of that information can be used and shared with third parties for things like targeted advertising and that's what worries us.
That's a whole lot of personal information Youper collects that you really have to hope they keeps secure. Just a reminder, they say on their own privacy page, "Unfortunately, the transmission of information via the internet is not completely secure. Although we will do our best to protect your personal information, we cannot guarantee the security of your data transmitted to our Website and App; any transmission is at your own risk." This is a good reminder, what you share on the internet is never, ever 100% safe and secure.
Is there more that worries us? Yeah, there's more. Youper says they "may disclose aggregated, de-identified information about our users, and information that does not identify any individual, without restriction." Here's where we remind you that such de-identified data has been found to be relatively easy to re-identify, especially if location data is included. And Youper doesn't meet our Minimum Security Standards as we were able to login to the app with the weak password "111111". Requiring a strong password on an app that collects and stores so much personal information seems like an easy way to show you care about protecting the privacy of yours users. Too bad Youper doesn't do that.
So yeah, Youper's huge personal data collection and rather scary privacy and security practices leave us thinking there might be better apps to help you manage your anxiety and depression. What's the worst that could happen? Uhg, we don't even want to go there. It would really suck if your personal profile leaked and went up for sale on the dark web where a sketchy group of bad guys accessed it and used it to make your life miserable by outing your mental health problems to the world. Nobody needs that.
Tips to protect yourself
Chose a strong password. Unfortunately, the app will not prompt you to do it.
Possibly limit the data you provide to the app only to what is necessary.
Can it snoop on me?
What can be used to sign up?
Apple and Google sign-ups are possible
What data does the company collect?
"Name, home address, billing address, shipping address, email address, home, work, and mobile telephone numbers, country, date of birth, credit or debit card number (for payment purposes only), driver’s license number, audio, images, and videos of you, Social Security Number, health insurance subscriber information, racial or ethnic origin, religion or religious believes, criminal background checks, criminal history, political organizations or beliefs, sexual orientation or preferences, or any other information you chose to provide or which is collected. Real-time information about the location of your device is collected, too."
Your medical history, health information. Wearable body sensor/activity data such as heart rate data can be accessed by the app
How does the company use this data?
How can you control your data?
What is the company’s known track record of protecting users’ data?
No known privacy or security incidents discovered in the last 3 years.
Child Privacy Information
Can this product be used offline?
User-friendly privacy information?
Links to privacy information
Does this product meet our Minimum Security Standards?
Youper has encryption in transit. We could not determine if they have encryption at rest.
Accepted '111111' as a password.
Youper says "Youper AI Assistant is based on therapy and meditation. Through quick and insightful conversations, Youper helps you master life's ups and downs."
Is this AI untrustworthy?
What kind of decisions does the AI make about you or for you?
Suggestions and meditative audios.
Is the company transparent about how the AI works?
Does the user have control over the AI features?
Peace of Mind...Evaluating the Privacy Practices of Mental Health AppsConsumer Reports
The Digital Standard Case Study: Mental Health AppsThe Digital Standard
Mental Health Apps Aren't All As Private As You May ThinkConsumer Reports
Global Mental Health Apps Market Size, Share & Industry Trends Analysis Report By Application, By Platform Type, By Regional Outlook and Forecast, 2021 - 2027Yahoo! finance
Youper App Review 2022: Pros & Cons, Cost, & Who It’s Right ForChoosing Therapy
Youper, a chatbot that helps users navigate their emotions, raises $3 million in seed fundingTechCrunch
Using AI Chatbots for mental health care - an expert opinionAugmented Mental Health
The 6 Best Apps for Depression in 2022Psych Central
The Best Depression AppsHealthline
Youper AI ReviewOne Mind Psyber Guide
The Therapy-App FantasyThe Cut
Privacy Concerns About Emotional ChatbotsInfosec
Self-care apps want to make us happy. So why do they make us feel so bleak?Mashable
This App Uses AI Chats To Provide Mental Health Support — Here’s How It WorksBustle
Acceptability and Effectiveness of Artificial Intelligence Therapy for Anxiety and Depression (Youper): Longitudinal Observational StudyNational Center for Biotechnology Information
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