I’m sure by now you have heard about the iPhone geotracking file. Well, despite feigning ignorance, it turns out that Apple’s agenda is to do just that. They filed for a patent on tracking users by using data captured by the mobile device.
If you read the statements of claim in the patent application, Apple unambiguously intends to continuously capture GPS tracking data on the device and use that location history data to understand where the user has gone.
Think about it … when you sync up your iPhone or any Apple device to iTunes, what is going back and forth?? Is that little file being dumped into your iTunes account on the Apple server, to be consolidated, sold and exploited? Is the latest game or app that you downloaded reading that file and pinging home base with your details? Count on it.
Honestly, this continuous violation of personal privacy is serious. It turns out the web and SmartPhones are nothing more than personal surveillance technologies. But then most users don’t seem to care, willingly and enthusiastically providing personal details to their social media platform(s) of choice and opt-in to any new freebe service available — WHOSE ONLY ASSET IS YOU.
At a minimum, legislation needs to be put in place that requires users to opt-in to this surveillance. As it stands now, this capability is only being discovered by cyber-sleuths. And once in the open, the culprit companies feign ignorance, issue a PR bug fix, and do it again.
More on this topic … the iPhone geotracking issue was followed shortly by the revelation that TomTom was selling GPS tracking data to the Dutch police, who were using it to understand better where to place speed traps. In this case it was aggregate data that was not tied to an individual user, though it probably could be if the device was registered to an individual. In Apple’s case, the iPhone knows everything about you.
And WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange asserts in an interview with Russia Today that U.S. intelligence and law enforcement agencies have established automated intelligence gathering interface to all major social networks and several of the largest internet-based companies.
So the next time you log into Facebook and hear a sucking sound, that is all of your personal information being vacuumed into data servers by government, intelligence agencies and corporate entities interested in exploiting who you are, what you do, who your friends are, and what you like.
The Watchers are Watching.