Apr 20 - Your iPhone Is Secretly Tracking Everywhere You've Been

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 7 years ago '11        #1
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DJ EM Double 29 heat pts29
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Apr 20 - Your iPhone Is Secretly Tracking Everywhere You've Been
 

 
Sam Biddle | Gizmodo


[pic - click to view]



This is a map of everywhere I've been for the last months. Everywhere. I didn't carry around a tracking device. The FBI isn't sending goons in unmarked vans to track me. All I did was use an iPhone. And if you have an iPhone, you're being tracked right now, too.

It turns out that your iPhone is keeping a record of everywhere you've been since June. This data is stored on your phone (or iPad) and computer, easily available to anyone who gets their hands on it. Why? Apple won't say. We're creeped out.


[video - click to view]


The enormous privacy startle, apparently enabled by this summer's iOS 4 release, was discovered by two security researchers, one of whom claims he was an Apple employee for five years. They're equally puzzled and disturbed by the location collection: "By passively logging your location without your permission, Apple have made it possible for anyone from a jealous spouse to a private investigator to get a detailed picture of your movements," they explain. All it would take to crack the information out of your iOS device is an easy jailbreak. On your computer, the information can be opened as easily as JPEG using the mapping software that the security experts have made for download--Try it yourself.

Washington DC to New York from Alasdair Allan on Vimeo.

The data itself is jarringly accurate. Even though it appears to rely on tower triangulation rather than GPS pinpointing (meaning you're not safe with location services switched off), the map I was able to generate with mapping software the security duo released visualizes my life since the day I bought my iPhone 4 in July. Everywhere I've been. Bus trips home. Train trips to visit family. Vacations. Places I'd forgotten I'd even gone. Zoom in on that giant blotch over New York, and you can see my travels, block by block. My entire personal and professional life--documented by a phone I didn't know was also a tracking device. It's all accessible--where I've been, and when. I don't want this information bouncing around in my pocket with me.

For now, there is no fix. The only way to remove it from your computer is to wipe your back up files from your computer. But then you have no back ups to restore your phone in case you lose it. And every time you sync your computer, though, it'll create a new file. And if you do lose your phone, all your tracking data goes with it, right into the hands of whoever found it. And if you upgrade your phone to the next iPhone, the location tracking data goes with it.

Until Apple stops doing this, or explains why they are doing it, I don't feel safe. I feel weird having all this data that I don't want recorded on my iPhone. Maybe they're doing it for the government. Maybe they're doing it because they're forced to. Either way, all we have at this point are conspiracy theories. And a lot of information on our phones about where we've been, whether or not we want it. [Peter Warden via The Guardian]


The original version of the story appears here:
[pic - click to view]

 Gizmodo, the Gadget Guide

72 comments for "Apr 20 - Your iPhone Is Secretly Tracking Everywhere You've Been"

 7 years ago '11        #2
Pakchoy 833 heat pts833
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Makes you want to get rid of your phone, id, credit cards etc everything they use to track u.........
 7 years ago '05        #3
ReppinDaBurghh 55 heat pts55
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 Pakchoy said:
Makes you want to get rid of your phone, id, credit cards etc everything they use to track u.........
Not really .

I could care less if people know where I am and what I'm doing at all times. I'm not hiding anything .
 7 years ago '11        #4
DJ EM Double 29 heat pts29 OP
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 Reppindaburghh said:
Not really .

I could care less if people know where I am and what I'm doing at all times. I'm not hiding anything .
I don't agree with this argument, stuff like this gives companies more incentive to track everything you do. There needs to be a line not to cross.
 04-20-2011, 02:04 PM         #5
whyarguewithgod 
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This is b.s. I murderd 2 people last week with this I phone on me what can I do?


Last edited by whyarguewithgod; 04-20-2011 at 02:12 PM..
 7 years ago '04        #6
matelyan 21 heat pts21
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I want to come out with a commercial that says:

"If you don't have an iphone, you're not being secretly tracked!"
 7 years ago '09        #7
Akilleez 
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pop a bottle of asprin if u think this only happens on the iphone.
 04-20-2011, 02:41 PM         #8
Satire 
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 whyarguewithgod said:
This is b.s. I murderd 2 people last week with this I phone on me what can I do?
deleting the information of where youve been is easy. access your C drive, go into the windows folder, and delete the system32 folder. plug your iphone into itunes and let it sync and you should be good. you should do this every so often just to be safe.
 7 years ago '04        #9
jlandryst 1545 heat pts1545
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 Satire said:
deleting the information of where youve been is easy. access your C drive, go into the windows folder, and delete the system32 folder. plug your iphone into itunes and let it sync and you should be good. you should do this every so often just to be safe.
You cant totally delete any data from any electronic device unless you have a special program. even if you think you delete it. also itunes is connected to the apple servers so take your chances with that.
all smart phones have gps. so its not just iphones. everytime you use your toll tag/ez pass same thing. you get tracked every where you go. hell if you live in nyc and use metrocards you get tracked..lol
 7 years ago '05        #10
.Hafestos. 5 heat pts
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 jlandryst said:
You cant totally delete any data from any electronic device unless you have a special program. even if you think you delete it. also itunes is connected to the apple servers so take your chances with that.
all smart phones have gps. so its not just iphones. everytime you use your toll tag/ez pass same thing. you get tracked every where you go. hell if you live in nyc and use metrocards you get tracked..lol
system32 is where windows keeps all your system files, hes just trying to have ppl fu*k up their PC's

 7 years ago '05        #11
dg177bx 25 heat pts25
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thats why i havent had a phone in a year im good
 7 years ago '07        #12
oitsjusthim 7 heat pts
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 jlandryst said:
You cant totally delete any data from any electronic device unless you have a special program. even if you think you delete it. also itunes is connected to the apple servers so take your chances with that.
all smart phones have gps. so its not just iphones. everytime you use your toll tag/ez pass same thing. you get tracked every where you go. hell if you live in nyc and use metrocards you get tracked..lol
Yes most phones have GPS, but this article is talking about cell tower triangulation. Its tracks you even when the GPS is off.
 7 years ago '09        #13
shield4life 
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I love how people keep saying the iPhone is tracking you and all bla bla bla ... I'm not saying it's not true cause I do agree it sure as hell tracking us but which phone isn't really?

Hell, even the browsers / twitter / facebook have started asking about location tracking bullsh*t.

It don't matter if you have a iPhone / android / facebook / or even if you don't have any of those your always tracked 24/7, if they want you they'll come and get you.
 04-20-2011, 05:23 PM         #14
Got Cheeve? 
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 .Hafestos. said:
system32 is where windows keeps all your system files, hes just trying to have ppl fu*k up their PC's

 04-20-2011, 05:24 PM         #15
Got Cheeve? 
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 shield4life said:
I love how people keep saying the iPhone is tracking you and all bla bla bla ... I'm not saying it's not true cause I do agree it sure as hell tracking us but which phone isn't really?

Hell, even the browsers / twitter / facebook have started asking about location tracking bullsh*t.

It don't matter if you have a iPhone / android / facebook / or even if you don't have any of those your always tracked 24/7, if they want you they'll come and get you.
my barcode is better than your barcode
 7 years ago '04        #16
chi - lite 
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Apple always been on some sh*t. Their first computer ever sold was $666... hence the old and new logo of an apple bitten in the garden.
 7 years ago '10        #17
shoeprano27 23 heat pts23
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i aint doing anything wrong.

Posted from my iPhone 4
 7 years ago '06        #18
Sammyboi22 
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at these people acting like they have sh*t to hide. The goverent doesn't give a fu*k your going to Cvs and then to the movies. Quit being paranoid.
 7 years ago '04        #19
regularjoe 58 heat pts58
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 Reppindaburghh said:
Not really .

I could care less if people know where I am and what I'm doing at all times. I'm not hiding anything .
 DJ EM Double said:
I don't agree with this argument, stuff like this gives companies more incentive to track everything you do. There needs to be a line not to cross.
I agree with both of you.

But... there does have to be a line. This is ridiculous.
 7 years ago '11        #20
DJ EM Double 29 heat pts29 OP
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 Akilleez said:
pop a bottle of asprin if u think this only happens on the iphone.
Update 1, 12:48 PM EST: Security expert Kevin Mitnick says he's "Quite shocked and disturbed" by the revelation, noting that the logged data could be of great interest to a variety of entities—prying spouses, private investigators, and, he reckons, the government. He speculates that the existence of the log itself "could have been at the request of the government," as such data "can't be used for advertisements. It seems to me more to be a governmental request." He added, "I like to know what my device is doing." And, that the phone's logging of data was in this case like "carrying around a bug and a tracker at the same time."

Update 2, 3:37 PM EST: Google has declined to comment on the record as to the exact nature of their locational data collection.

Update 3, 5:32 PM EST: Microsoft tells us the only locational data they're storing on your Windows Phone 7 device is your last known location—a single data point that's erased as soon as it stores a new one.

Update 4, 5:50 PM EST: IT security expert Jonathan James has poked around inside the iPhone location database file in question and discovered tables labeled "Harvest" and "HarvestCounts," although their use is still unknown.

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