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Saturday, April 30, 2011

Apple Denies It’s Tracking And Collecting Data

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By: kareem@techsual.com

Apple finally responded to the concerns people were having about the recent fears they’ve been tracking you and collecting your data, leaving it in an unsafe, unencrypted database that can be found on whatever iDevice and the machine it’s been synched to and accessed with the right software.

Apple explained it pretty well, although it took them a while to come up with something magical enough people would believe it, or they just wanted to put something concise together so people could get a full understanding of what's going on, rather than do what Google did and just fess up to the paranoia induced rumors of what might be going on by saying they collect the data but you can always turn it off because they make you aware of what’s going on.  I don’t think anyone really believes that.

Aware of what’s going on? I don’t know how many people out there are fully aware of how their cell phone send and receive calls let alone how data transfer and location based services work. But whatever that just kind of irked me, I like and use Android but I’ll be damned if I’m ‘aware’ of all the information it collects.

I’ve found out some pretty crazy things about how investigators can track you though your phone and other devices. They’ve been doing it long before people had any clue what OS their phone was running let alone that every picture they took was digitally time and location stamped, so that was traceable, slightly encrypted (the software to get around this is easy to find) and on your device and whatever computer you put the pictures on. Not to mention uploading to online services…yeesh and NOW people are paranoid.

At any rate. Apple said that it is not tracking your iPhone, your phone is tracking all the towers it comes across and storing the triangulated data so that apps you use and the phones OS can quickly access. It makes sense seeing as it’s much faster for an app to pull data from a database then making it search every time in GPS, which could really slow down your Facebook and Foursquare check-ins.

Apple has also stated that they are going to release a software update within a few weeks that will make the database smaller and  give users the option to wipe their location history as well as opt out of it all together, which in turn will make people wonder why it’s taking so long for places to load when they use anything that made use of that data, such as GPS. Thankfully for iPhone and iPad users the next version of iOS will encrypt the data, because apparently that’s impossible to do on the current one with an update, otherwise they’d be doing it right?

If you think that this is new, or it will stop with any kind of updates. You should probably wathc this:

 

Source: Wall Street Journal

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