How to Stop Being Paranoid About App Annie

July 7, 2012

On our third episode of In Beta, Kevin and I discussed webapps that require you to enter your username and password to accounts that can move your money around or purchase items—namely, Mint.com and App Annie. My concern, with App Annie in particular, was that while the app promises to only use your account to read app sales data, in theory it could use your username and password to go on a shopping spree in the iTunes and/or Play Store.

Listener Steve wrote in to suggest creating secondary developer accounts to use with App Annie that don't have purchasing power. Duh! If you log into iTunes Connect, click on "Manage Users" to invite a new user and grant it access to your app's financial information. Similarly, in the Play Store Developer Console, you can also invite a read-financial-data-only account for use with App Annie. These accounts cannot purchase anything, they can only see the financial reports for your apps. Thanks to Steve for pointing this out. I hope that App Annie makes this suggestion more blatantly in its interface to assuage developer fears about sharing sensitive account credentials going forward.