A review and comparative analysis of security risks and safety measures of mobile health apps

Karen Scott, Deborah Richards, Rajindra Adhikari

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)
101 Downloads (Pure)


In line with a patient-centred model of healthcare, Mobile Health applications (mHealth apps) provide convenient and equitable access to health and well-being resources and programs that can enable consumers to monitor their health related problems, understand specific medical conditions and attain personal fitness goals. This increase in access and control comes with an increase in risk and responsibility to identify and manage the associated risks, such as the privacy and security of consumers' personal and health information. Based on a review of the literature, this paper identifies a set of risk and safety features for evaluating mHealth apps and uses those features to conduct a comparative analysis of the 20 most popular mHealth apps. The comparative analysis reveals that current mHealth apps do pose a risk to consumers. To address the safety and privacy concerns, recommendations to consumers and app developers are offered together with consideration of mHealth app future trends.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalAustralasian Journal of Information Systems
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Bibliographical note

Copyright 2015 the authors. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • mHealth
  • security
  • privacy
  • Apps


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