The days in which tracking a person through their phone was just Sci Fi are over as it seems that we are subjected to this on a daily basis according to the latest reports signaled by two computer experts which have discovered that Apple iPhone contains hidden files which have raised controversy.
These hidden iOS files store data with regards to the whereabouts of the owner, so you are basically tracked through a GPS system. With a certain program you’ll be able to download data from a phone and see where a person has been over a period of time, but isn’t this a bit pushed to extremes? According to The Wall Street Journal, Google’s Android smart phones transmit the data stored regularly to Google, so basically all your moves are being tracked.
Using a simple program one could download from an iPhone/iPad synchronized to a computer all the data stored on the hidden files, making it possible for others who are interested to take a peek at detailed information with regards to your location over an extended period of time. Pete Warden and Alasdair Allan are the researchers who discovered these hidden files and according to the Guardian UK, Warden stated that:
“Apple has made it possible for almost anybody – a jealous spouse, a private detective – with access to your phone or computer to get detailed information about where you’ve been.”
The hidden file was discovered while the two researchers were browsing through the data available on the gadget and state that they were not sure how much data was stored there, but after taking more interest on the matter Warden said:
“After we dug further and visualized the extracted data, it became clear that there was a scary amount of detail on our movements.”
The data could actually compromise your privacy, so no wonder that this find has raised an abundance of questions. Legally it is still unclear if Apple has the right to store and collect the data, but if you take a peek at the Privacy Terms on iTunes among others you’ll find the following:
“We may collect information such as occupation, language, zip code, area code, unique device identifier, location, and the time zone where an Apple product is used so that we can better understand customer behavior and improve our products, services, and advertising.”
Finally after days of waiting for a response the people from Apple stated on Wednesday that the whole deal is just a misunderstanding and that apple does not record the whereabouts of the iPhone user but records Wi-Fi hot spots and cell towers. It was also stated that an error occurring in the system was to blame for the year’s worth of info stocking, and that the problem will be fixed in the next few weeks.
What do you think about this subject? Does it bother you at all that this data is being stored?
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