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Is Apple iStalking You?

5:00 PM -- Gasp! The Twitter-verse is aghast at the news that the Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) iPhone may be tracking your every move.

The news certainly isn't a great appetizer for Apple's earnings report Wednesday night: Security researchers Pete Warden and Alasdair Allan revealed that Apple handsets record users' location co-ordinates along with a time-stamp on the phone in a secret -- but open -- file on the phone. So, in theory, interested parties (aka, your crazy stalker) could access the file and find out exactly where you've been. O'Reilly Media has posted a video of the two researchers talking about their findings, which you can watch below:

But what's really interesting to me is what Apple does with this information. Who -- if anyone -- do they sell it to?

Remember that carriers can already access this kind of information. Most every phone has a GPS receiver these days, and carriers can fine-tune that info by triangulating your position with cell-sites.

This is one of the ways used by the emergency services to try to find you if you place a 911 call. AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) even recently made a feature of the capability with an opt-in location-aware ad and voucher service.

But the Apple demographic is no doubt an attractive one for many third-party advertisers, and with this information they have a lot more insight into their users' lifestyles. So I want to know what they actually do with this data.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile

joset01 12/5/2012 | 5:07:01 PM
re: Is Apple iStalking You?

I guess this makes LightSquared potentially breaking GPS a little more appealing ;-)

stennati300 12/5/2012 | 5:06:59 PM
re: Is Apple iStalking You?



 


Dan, do you know if Apple does indeed has access to our location information? According to the researchers there is no evidence that the data is also transmitted to Apple as it's collected. That said, its potentially very valuable info. 




OldPOTS 12/5/2012 | 5:06:58 PM
re: Is Apple iStalking You?

Apple No,not yet!


OTHERS YES - like police


http://www.thenewspaper.com/ne...


Apple has had to respond but 'there is no problem'


http://www.cnbc.com/id/4269761...


Read all about how and what they extract with a

<h3>UNIVERSAL FORENSICS EXTRACTION DEVICE (UFED)</h3>
<h3>http://www.cellebrite.com/fore...</h3>

&nbsp;


I want one of those UFED said every criminal !!!!! @#$%^&amp;*()#$%^&amp;*()


&nbsp;


OP

stennati300 12/5/2012 | 5:06:58 PM
re: Is Apple iStalking You?



&nbsp;


Dan, do you know if Apple does indeed has access to our location information? According to the researchers there is no evidence&nbsp;that the data is also transmitted to Apple as it's collected.&nbsp;That said, its potentially very valuable info.&nbsp;




stennati300 12/5/2012 | 5:06:57 PM
re: Is Apple iStalking You?




Of course, agree that tracking user location info on the cell phone more than what is already done by the carriers is not required. I was wondering if Apple has that information. &nbsp;You say not yet...that's telling. Police can always get my info if they really wanted to. The criminals&hellip;umm&hellip;, yes, now that is scary.




OldPOTS 12/5/2012 | 5:06:56 PM
re: Is Apple iStalking You?

"Police can always get my info if they really wanted to."


They haven't needed a warant yet


Note that the device does not have to attach to the phones, but it does require some time - read the details.


joset01 12/5/2012 | 5:06:54 PM
re: Is Apple iStalking You?

I don't know what Apple is doing with this info yet. It seems logical, however, that if they're going to risk such a privacy furor by collecting this data they want it for some use or other. No?

MMQoS 12/5/2012 | 5:06:54 PM
re: Is Apple iStalking You?

While Apple MAY not have access in real time I expect that they gain access to that info (data base) when one synchronizes your ixxx device with iTunes.&nbsp; I have noticed that there is a transmission of data when I do so.&nbsp; I have wondered what they do with that data as iTunes knows all about me.


MMQoS

OldPOTS 12/5/2012 | 5:06:52 PM
re: Is Apple iStalking You?

Latest out is that the apps have access to it.


OP

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