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(Tom's Guide)   Apple included in its updated user agreement a provision allowing it to record the GPS position of iPads and iPhones. iBrother is watching you   (tomsguide.com) divider line 378
    More: Interesting, geographic locations, GPS, iPhone, MacBook, apples  
•       •       •

9398 clicks; posted to Main » on 21 Apr 2011 at 10:50 AM (3 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2011-04-21 11:06:26 AM

Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: It's got the attention of Washington apparently.

Senator Franken already fired off a letter asking Apple to explain themselves Link (new window)


Damage control: Quick, who can we use to make it look like we didn't know about this? Franken? Perfect!
 
2011-04-21 11:06:58 AM
Subby, you missed a great use of the irony tag.
 
2011-04-21 11:07:02 AM
The all seeing "i"
 
2011-04-21 11:07:08 AM
Oh and i forgot to mention that it's all stored on your phone and computer which can be easily accessed with a provided jailbreak program and a mapping program that creates the .jpegs in the picture. Nah, no invasion of privacy at all. Jealous significant others hiring PIs.... noooo that will never happen.
 
2011-04-21 11:07:44 AM

Theaetetus: birchman: Theaetetus: GAT_00: Theaetetus: Duh. It's called location services.

Being able to obtain it is one thing, emergency services can do that with your cell phone if it is capable, but recording it is something else.

I know. That something else is called "location services" (new window). It enables location-based push ads, location-based tagging of photos, faster GPS syncing, etc.

How does storing every place you've ever been forever help that? That should all be done in real-time.

Location-based enhanced ad targeting. Say you live in Boston, but go to New York every month: by storing and analyzing location data over an extended time period, this can be determined, and then relevant ads for your next trip can be pushed to you - discounted travel tickets at that time, discounted theater shows, pre-paid restaurant reservations, etc.

Or, say you're at a baseball game. Different ads could be pushed to you depending on whether it's the first time you've ever been there, or whether you're a repeat attendee (e.g. possible season ticket holder). Or, still different ads based on the fact that you're at a baseball game today, but last week, you were at a basketball game, and the week before that at a hockey game (e.g. are you a general sports fan, or just a baseball fan?).

Doing this in real-time without using historical data is, by definition, impossible.


You pay hundreds of dollars for that brick. You pay (probably) hundreds if not thousands just to use it over the course of a year. You pay for A LOT of apps you use on it. This isn't Yahoo Radio trying to figure out if you like Country or Pop. What you describe... it's you paying to have your personal privacy eliminated so that multi-billion-dollar companies can push their sales a little higher and app designers can charge a little more for ad-space. And you PAY FOR THIS.

If I travel regularly between Boston and New York, I can google travel deals. If I'm a sports fan, I can go to the website of the league, stadium or team and buy whatever the hell I want (in fact, they want you to pretty much buy everything with a logo on it). Most advertising is used to influence people to buy something they don't really need or want by making them think they need or want it. To support free products, sure. But to do this on something that costs the equivalent of a decent laptop, which you have to pay about double to internet access on, compared to a home data line... I can't understand why you defend it.
 
2011-04-21 11:08:19 AM
beer4breakfast: BTW, this technique and GPS use trilateration, not triangulation. No trig with angles and triangles is used to figure out your position. I see this mistake made all the time.


ogre-nerds.jpg
 
2011-04-21 11:08:37 AM

doubled99: Doubleplusgood


userserve-ak.last.fm
 
2011-04-21 11:08:55 AM

drworm: I find it ridiculous that these companies can just update their user agreements after a user purchased the item. If someone agrees to the terms before the purchase, the owner of the device should be the one that has to agree to the terms. If they do not, there should be grandfathered in to the terms of service at the time of the sale. Since they purchased the device/service on the pretense that these terms are the deal. Unfortunately, these terms often state they can be changed at any time without notice. fark Corporate America and all of their legal jargon.


"I am altering the deal. Pray I don't alter it any further."
 
2011-04-21 11:09:24 AM

Theaetetus: Plus, it's opt-in. When you start up the map application, for example, it pops up a dialog asking if you want it to use your current location and to enable location services.


No, it's not. The data is also collected via cell tower triangulation. That happens constantly regardless of whether you enable GPS location services.
 
2011-04-21 11:10:52 AM
You have a two-way radio that already is tracked through a communications network anyway. All of you do. This is not really that big of a deal.
 
2011-04-21 11:10:54 AM

Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: Theaetetus: then the device must also have the decryption key

No, it must not. *facepalm*

The decryption key does not have to be stored locally. I mean....really? That's what you believe?


Practically, spanky. Sure, the phone can contact a central server every time it needs to encode or decode location data, but frankly, that would be a waste of bandwidth and time.

Theaetetus: See my other reply.

There was an opt-out for that when it was announced by Apple. If you've opted out, the data shouldn't need to be stored at all. Period.


And if you've opted out, it's not. Why is this difficult for you to understand?

Theaetetus: Apple is fine with people jailbreaking their devices

No, they're not fine with it. They simply realize an exercise in futility when they see one. And realize what they can and cannot reasonably execute. Like bricking non jailbroken devices when they tried to be aggressive with it back during iOS1


Bullshiat. If I install Linux on my computer, and then download and install the latest Windows 7 service pack, did Microsoft just aggressively brick my computer? Only if I'm a twat who refuses to take responsibility for the modifications I made.
 
2011-04-21 11:11:01 AM

altrocks: I can't understand why you defend it.


Because he's the resident Apple apologist. He defends Apple in damn near every thread about it.
 
2011-04-21 11:11:35 AM
thepatriotaxe.com
 
2011-04-21 11:11:51 AM

birchman: Famous Thamas: Still, once that kind of data is collected, it isn't going to go away, ever. Law enforcement and less scrupulous types will get access to it as well.

Let's not kid ourselves, it's not like ATT/Verizon/etc aren't storing every single tower you hit anyway.


You sounds like an iFan, "but but the other guys are doing it too".
 
2011-04-21 11:12:07 AM
anothershittyblogbysomedouche.files.wordpress.com


Worried? No problem:


3.bp.blogspot.com


Make another hat - for your phone!*


/*Not responsible for consequences
//Your results may vary
 
2011-04-21 11:12:15 AM

Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: Theaetetus: Plus, it's opt-in. When you start up the map application, for example, it pops up a dialog asking if you want it to use your current location and to enable location services.

No, it's not. The data is also collected via cell tower triangulation. That happens constantly regardless of whether you enable GPS location services.


Really? Wow, I figured it was only if you had location services enabled. That's ridiculous. You should be able to turn it off, period.
 
2011-04-21 11:12:32 AM
Now Apple will know I post on Fark while in the bathroom at work.
 
2011-04-21 11:12:49 AM

basemetal

I've always said, it's not the government that I fear watching me, they have proven time and time again to be bungling idiots. It's the big corporations that are watching you that I fear.


Oh, how funny and sad all at the same time. And true....
 
2011-04-21 11:12:51 AM
Apple fanbois aren't going to care about this. They'll see the shiniest new Apple toy and start to cream in their pants right away.
 
2011-04-21 11:13:03 AM

Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: Theaetetus: Plus, it's opt-in. When you start up the map application, for example, it pops up a dialog asking if you want it to use your current location and to enable location services.

No, it's not. The data is also collected via cell tower triangulation. That happens constantly regardless of whether you enable GPS location services.


... no, it's not. Do you see "GPS" in front of location services anywhere except your reply? Nope. Thanks for playing. We now return you to your regularly scheduled discussion based on actual facts.
 
2011-04-21 11:13:13 AM
"There was of course no way of knowing whether you were being watched at any given moment. How often, or on what system, the Thought Police plugged in on any individual wire was guesswork. It was even conceivable that they watched everybody all the time. But at any rate they could plug in your wire whenever they wanted to. You had to live-did live, from habit that became instinct-in the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and, except in darkness, every movement scrutinized."

Orwell - 1984
 
2011-04-21 11:13:51 AM

Aarontology: thomps: don't worry, when these things see the light of day, companies face punishment. remember when the government put agents in all of the major phone companies to spy on citizens and when the public found out about it we sued the phone companies into oblivion? that'll teach companies not to f*ck with us

After the whole telecomm business, I really wouldn't be surprised if this information went straight to the Feds. Since it's from private enterprise, it doesn't have to worry about that pesky Constitution.

But that could be the tinfoil hat talking.


Giving it to the feds would be silly, they'd likely sell it to the feds. That way it's like they're charging us to spy on us. It's a very niche service.
 
2011-04-21 11:14:05 AM

birchman: Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: Theaetetus: Plus, it's opt-in. When you start up the map application, for example, it pops up a dialog asking if you want it to use your current location and to enable location services.

No, it's not. The data is also collected via cell tower triangulation. That happens constantly regardless of whether you enable GPS location services.

Really? Wow, I figured it was only if you had location services enabled. That's ridiculous. You should be able to turn it off, period.



You can't turn your phone off? Wierd. Just let the battery die, that should work.
 
2011-04-21 11:14:27 AM

altrocks: You pay hundreds of dollars for that brick. You pay (probably) hundreds if not thousands just to use it over the course of a year. You pay for A LOT of apps you use on it. This isn't Yahoo Radio trying to figure out if you like Country or Pop. What you describe... it's you paying to have your personal privacy eliminated so that multi-billion-dollar companies can push their sales a little higher and app designers can charge a little more for ad-space. And you PAY FOR THIS.

If I travel regularly between Boston and New York, I can google travel deals. If I'm a sports fan, I can go to the website of the league, stadium or team and buy whatever the hell I want (in fact, they want you to pretty much buy everything with a logo on it). Most advertising is used to influence people to buy something they don't really need or want by making them think they need or want it. To support free products, sure. But to do this on something that costs the equivalent of a decent laptop, which you have to pay about double to internet access on, compared to a home data line... I can't understand why you defend it.


That's an entirely different discussion. I'm talking about the technical aspects... If you want to talk about the philosophy of capitalism and advertising, I'm happy to do that, but it's a different topic.
 
2011-04-21 11:14:40 AM

Theaetetus: Practically, spanky. Sure, the phone can contact a central server every time it needs to encode or decode location data, but frankly, that would be a waste of bandwidth and time.


Waste of bandwidth? On a device that is constantly using a data connection anyway to send and receive small amounts of data? A decryption key is not a 50MB file, spanky.

Theaetetus: And if you've opted out, it's not. Why is this difficult for you to understand?


Yes, it is. The data file is still showing up on phones of people who visited Apple's opt-out link a year ago.

Theaetetus: Bullshiat. If I install Linux on my computer, and then download and install the latest Windows 7 service pack, did Microsoft just aggressively brick my computer? Only if I'm a twat who refuses to take responsibility for the modifications I made.


Apples and bowling balls. That's not a valid response.

Apple bricked non-jailbroken phones back during iOS1 when they tried to get aggressive about locking down the devices.
 
2011-04-21 11:15:34 AM

Theaetetus: Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: Theaetetus: Plus, it's opt-in. When you start up the map application, for example, it pops up a dialog asking if you want it to use your current location and to enable location services.

No, it's not. The data is also collected via cell tower triangulation. That happens constantly regardless of whether you enable GPS location services.

... no, it's not. Do you see "GPS" in front of location services anywhere except your reply? Nope. Thanks for playing. We now return you to your regularly scheduled discussion based on actual facts.


Let us know when you have some.
 
2011-04-21 11:15:48 AM
So... someone explain to me how the fark they aren't able to render "theft of cell phone" completely obsolete by now?

A) they've been able to track where every phone is for years.
B) they're finally being public about it.
C) we already know they can "update" your phone in the background.

D) you report cell phone stolen -> you receive phone location + the company disables phone from utility (no button pushing/input acceptance/no turning off/completely un-use-able) until you retrieve it = unstealable phone = profit?
 
2011-04-21 11:15:51 AM

birchman: Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: Theaetetus: Plus, it's opt-in. When you start up the map application, for example, it pops up a dialog asking if you want it to use your current location and to enable location services.

No, it's not. The data is also collected via cell tower triangulation. That happens constantly regardless of whether you enable GPS location services.

Really? Wow, I figured it was only if you had location services enabled. That's ridiculous. You should be able to turn it off, period.


Nah, Schad is making things up. "Location Services" are not just the GPS, it's any location awareness, including tower and wifi-based location services. He'd rather spread FUD than actually look it up.
 
zz9
2011-04-21 11:15:53 AM

masshavoc: Oh and i forgot to mention that it's all stored on your phone and computer which can be easily accessed with a provided jailbreak program and a mapping program that creates the .jpegs in the picture. Nah, no invasion of privacy at all. Jealous significant others hiring PIs.... noooo that will never happen.


A couple of days ago there was an article about cops having a handheld device that could get all the data off your phone without you knowing. So if you were arrested and your phone was among your possessions the police had while you were in a cell they could get all this information.
"Hmmm.. Looks like some places and times match up with that pedo rapist we've been after..."
 
2011-04-21 11:16:33 AM

Dow Jones and the Temple of Doom: birchman: Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: Theaetetus: Plus, it's opt-in. When you start up the map application, for example, it pops up a dialog asking if you want it to use your current location and to enable location services.

No, it's not. The data is also collected via cell tower triangulation. That happens constantly regardless of whether you enable GPS location services.

Really? Wow, I figured it was only if you had location services enabled. That's ridiculous. You should be able to turn it off, period.


You can't turn your phone off? Wierd. Just let the battery die, that should work.


Yeah, I can afford to miss calls from potential customers. No biggie.
 
2011-04-21 11:16:53 AM

birchman: Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: Theaetetus: Plus, it's opt-in. When you start up the map application, for example, it pops up a dialog asking if you want it to use your current location and to enable location services.

No, it's not. The data is also collected via cell tower triangulation. That happens constantly regardless of whether you enable GPS location services.

Really? Wow, I figured it was only if you had location services enabled. That's ridiculous. You should be able to turn it off, period.



Your cell provider needs to know where you are to route calls to you. That's the core of the technology.

If you don't want to be tracked, remove the battery, put your phone in a foil or copper mesh bag, or don't carry a phone.

In any case, you won't be getting calls, texts, etc.
 
2011-04-21 11:16:56 AM

SDRR: basemetal

I've always said, it's not the government that I fear watching me, they have proven time and time again to be bungling idiots. It's the big corporations that are watching you that I fear.


Oh, how funny and sad all at the same time. And true....



I find evil only bungles when it tries to do good. No problems otherwise.
 
2011-04-21 11:16:59 AM

Latinwolf: birchman: Famous Thamas: Still, once that kind of data is collected, it isn't going to go away, ever. Law enforcement and less scrupulous types will get access to it as well.

Let's not kid ourselves, it's not like ATT/Verizon/etc aren't storing every single tower you hit anyway.

You sounds like an iFan, "but but the other guys are doing it too".


Read my other posts.
 
2011-04-21 11:17:32 AM

Theaetetus: ... no, it's not. Do you see "GPS" in front of location services anywhere except your reply? Nope.


You don't get it. The only thing the pop-ups do on a per-app basis are toggle whether you allow apps access to that data. Not whether or not it is stored.

The data is constantly being stored. The only "toggle" is whether or not you let apps have access to it.
 
2011-04-21 11:18:30 AM
Great, now Fartbongo is gonna know everytime i jerk it to some iporn while i'm driving down the freeway.

Thanks for nothing liberal hippies!
 
2011-04-21 11:18:35 AM

Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: Theaetetus: Practically, spanky. Sure, the phone can contact a central server every time it needs to encode or decode location data, but frankly, that would be a waste of bandwidth and time.

Waste of bandwidth? On a device that is constantly using a data connection anyway to send and receive small amounts of data? A decryption key is not a 50MB file, spanky.


Good thing there's only a single iPhone in the world.

Oh, wait.

Theaetetus: And if you've opted out, it's not. Why is this difficult for you to understand?

Yes, it is. The data file is still showing up on phones of people who visited Apple's opt-out link a year ago.


Link? WTF are you talking about? See screenshots above.

Theaetetus: Bullshiat. If I install Linux on my computer, and then download and install the latest Windows 7 service pack, did Microsoft just aggressively brick my computer? Only if I'm a twat who refuses to take responsibility for the modifications I made.

Apples and bowling balls. That's not a valid response.


Translation: "I have no response."

Apple bricked non-jailbroken phones back during iOS1 when they tried to get aggressive about locking down the devices.

No, Apple pushed out software updates. People who jailbroke their phones stupidly installed those software updates, not knowing what they did or whether they were compatible with their non-Apple firmware. They weren't. Ooops. It's exactly the same as some dope installing a Windows system update that overwrites a bunch of Linux system files since it's not expecting them to be there.
 
2011-04-21 11:18:49 AM

Farker T: birchman: Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: Theaetetus: Plus, it's opt-in. When you start up the map application, for example, it pops up a dialog asking if you want it to use your current location and to enable location services.

No, it's not. The data is also collected via cell tower triangulation. That happens constantly regardless of whether you enable GPS location services.

Really? Wow, I figured it was only if you had location services enabled. That's ridiculous. You should be able to turn it off, period.


Your cell provider needs to know where you are to route calls to you. That's the core of the technology.

If you don't want to be tracked, remove the battery, put your phone in a foil or copper mesh bag, or don't carry a phone.

In any case, you won't be getting calls, texts, etc.


It needs to know where I am now, not where I've been every 30 seconds since I've owned the phone.
 
2011-04-21 11:20:12 AM

zz9: masshavoc: Oh and i forgot to mention that it's all stored on your phone and computer which can be easily accessed with a provided jailbreak program and a mapping program that creates the .jpegs in the picture. Nah, no invasion of privacy at all. Jealous significant others hiring PIs.... noooo that will never happen.

A couple of days ago there was an article about cops having a handheld device that could get all the data off your phone without you knowing. So if you were arrested and your phone was among your possessions the police had while you were in a cell they could get all this information.
"Hmmm.. Looks like some places and times match up with that pedo rapist we've been after..."


I linked those stories, but fark never green lights them... until a couple days later

I guess the mods have to wait until it's not just Alex Jones covering a story before they'll green light it.
 
2011-04-21 11:20:17 AM

Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: Theaetetus: ... no, it's not. Do you see "GPS" in front of location services anywhere except your reply? Nope.

You don't get it. The only thing the pop-ups do on a per-app basis are toggle whether you allow apps access to that data. Not whether or not it is stored.

The data is constantly being stored. The only "toggle" is whether or not you let apps have access to it.


support.apple.com
I have no idea what you think that top switch does.
 
2011-04-21 11:20:26 AM
Redlit :(

"Apple 1984: Fighting against Big Brother. Apple 2011: Tracking and logging the GPS coordinates of iPhone users"
 
2011-04-21 11:20:59 AM

doglover: Can I sue them?


What are your damages?
 
2011-04-21 11:21:04 AM

stirfrybry: Dow Jones and the Temple of Doom: birchman: Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: Theaetetus: Plus, it's opt-in. When you start up the map application, for example, it pops up a dialog asking if you want it to use your current location and to enable location services.

No, it's not. The data is also collected via cell tower triangulation. That happens constantly regardless of whether you enable GPS location services.

Really? Wow, I figured it was only if you had location services enabled. That's ridiculous. You should be able to turn it off, period.


You can't turn your phone off? Wierd. Just let the battery die, that should work.

Yeah, I can afford to miss calls from potential customers. No biggie.


Do you know how cell phones work? Asking for a cell phone that doesn't track your location is like asking for is a car that doesn't use fuel. It's like asking for a filling lunch that doesn't have any calories. It's just silly.
 
2011-04-21 11:21:04 AM
In other news, Osama Bin Laden does not own an iProduct.
 
2011-04-21 11:21:18 AM

Theaetetus: fireclown: If there were only some kind of competing product.

**ahem** FROYO!

But the Froyo is also cursed.


+1
 
2011-04-21 11:21:29 AM

vaderstg: C) we already know they can "update" your phone in the background.


Depends on whether the device is "jailbroken". Then it's possible to block permissions for that.

vaderstg: D) you report cell phone stolen -> you receive phone location + the company disables phone from utility (no button pushing/input acceptance/no turning off/completely un-use-able) until you retrieve it = unstealable phone = profit?


Battery removal, signal jammers, lined bags that block all transmission of signals. etc, etc, etc

Theaetetus: Nah, Schad is making things up. "Location Services" are not just the GPS, it's any location awareness, including tower and wifi-based location services. He'd rather spread FUD than actually look it up.


Christ almighty. The location data is constantly being stored. Again, the only thing the settings and app-permissions toggle is whether or not that specific app is allowed access to the data. Not whether or not it is recorded.
 
2011-04-21 11:22:01 AM

PsyLord: Combining that and the story about the camera "bug" that takes random pictures, I'm surprised there isn't more nerd rage about this.


Nerd rage? More like nerd smugness. Serves you right for buying an iProduct.

/Nokia N900 running Maemo Linux
 
2011-04-21 11:22:32 AM

Theaetetus: Silverstaff: So, how do you opt out?

Oh, no opt-out? Mandatory you say?

System preferences/location services/big shiny off switch.

Plus, it's opt-in. When you start up the map application, for example, it pops up a dialog asking if you want it to use your current location and to enable location services.


Don't own anything Apple so I was waiting for the answer to this. If correct, then there's no problem. Thread should be over. As long as you have the ability to turn it off and on, who cares? ESPECIALLY since it's opt-IN from jump street.
 
2011-04-21 11:22:35 AM
It's an ankle monitor that you volunteer to wear without being aware.

A police state's wet dream.
 
2011-04-21 11:22:53 AM

Schadenfreude ist die schoenste Freude: Again, the only thing the settings and app-permissions toggle is whether or not that specific app is allowed access to the data.


support.apple.com
Top switch does not exist, apparently.
 
2011-04-21 11:22:54 AM

Theaetetus: altrocks: You pay hundreds of dollars for that brick. You pay (probably) hundreds if not thousands just to use it over the course of a year. You pay for A LOT of apps you use on it. This isn't Yahoo Radio trying to figure out if you like Country or Pop. What you describe... it's you paying to have your personal privacy eliminated so that multi-billion-dollar companies can push their sales a little higher and app designers can charge a little more for ad-space. And you PAY FOR THIS.

If I travel regularly between Boston and New York, I can google travel deals. If I'm a sports fan, I can go to the website of the league, stadium or team and buy whatever the hell I want (in fact, they want you to pretty much buy everything with a logo on it). Most advertising is used to influence people to buy something they don't really need or want by making them think they need or want it. To support free products, sure. But to do this on something that costs the equivalent of a decent laptop, which you have to pay about double to internet access on, compared to a home data line... I can't understand why you defend it.

That's an entirely different discussion. I'm talking about the technical aspects... If you want to talk about the philosophy of capitalism and advertising, I'm happy to do that, but it's a different topic.


It's the discussion you started with your explanation/excuse for the practice. I'm simply stating that I don't think your explanation/excuse is a very strong one.

And that debate would require a thread with the PITA at the top, otherwise we wouldn't get all the liberals, conservatives and libertarians in here to whaarblgrbl it up properly.
 
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