Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Beware Apple spying your location

If you own an iPhone or Ipad then its very likely that Apple might know the details of all the places you have visited. It might sound scary but it’s true. Today at where 2.0, the latest discovery was made public. Apparently the recorded positions are stored into a hidden file called “consolidated.db”. The file contains latitude-longitude coordinates along with a timestamp. What’s alarming is that this file is unencrypted and unprotected and can be accessed by any application. So if an app developer is aware of this file then he has access to very critical information. This information can be used for various location based research/analysis.

Iam sure consumers will be appalled to know that Apple is recording there location. But is there anything that they can do, well looks like not much luck since Apple has clearly stated that they have rights to capture location information in the terms and conditions. Snippet below.

Location-Based Services

To provide location-based services on Apple products, Apple and our partners and licensees may collect, use, and share precise location data, including the real-time geographic location of your Apple computer or device. This location data is collected anonymously in a form that does not personally identify you and is used by Apple and our partners and licensees to provide and improve location-based products and services. For example, we may share geographic location with application providers when you opt in to their location services.

Some location-based services offered by Apple, such as the MobileMe “Find My iPhone” feature, require your personal information for the feature to work.

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Anonymous said...

What if you turn location off does it still track your movements?

Anonymous said...

Don't look now but Android phones do more or less the same thing.

omfut(Ravi Shankar) said...

Yes, Location info is tracked even if its disabled. More below.

Anonymous said...

Android does the samething BUT it allows you to turn the feature on and off and tells you up front on the screen when you first activate the device