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He's always watching: Apple CEO Steve Jobs has implemented a plan that would allow his company to track users and target ads at their mobile devices. Germany isn't happy with that plan or Apple's lack of transparency.  (Source: MHP Books)
Nation demands answers as to what data Apple is collecting

Germany's Justice Minister Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger in an interview [Google translation] with Der Spiegel said that American electronics maker Apple needs to immediately adopt more transparency .  She stated, "Users of iPhones and other GPS devices must be aware of what kind of information about them is being collected."

She said that Apple must "immediately make clear" what information it plans to collect.  She says that Apple must "open its databases to German data protection authorities" and make it clear how long it intends to keep user data.

The announcement comes in the wake of changes to Apple's privacy policy, which indicate that Apple may be tracking and storing users' locations via GPS.  That could allow the company to better target its ads, leading to more lucrative revenue and new opportunities, but it would also create privacy concerns.

While it's clear that you can opt out of allowing third-party (non-Apple) apps to collect location data, it's unclear if you can completely opt out of Apple's mobile device tracking plan or exactly what that plan is (the legal language merely suggests that Apple has the opportunity to make use of tracking).

Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger says it would be "unthinkable" for Apple to track users' locations or collect info to try to detect their personalities.  She states, "Apple has the obligation to properly implement the transparency so often promised by (CEO) Steve Jobs."

Apple faces government inquiries in the U.S. over privacy and antitrust concerns.

Meanwhile, other companies are struggling with Germany's progressive stance on privacy. Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger has directed recent criticism against the world's largest social network, Facebook.  She firmly disagrees with the site's founder, Mark Zuckerberg, in his belief that users no longer care about privacy.  She recently quit the site over privacy concerns.

Google also recently apologized to Germans for "accidentally" collecting personal data sent by consumers over wireless networks.

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Delusion in media.
By Unfixedyouth on 6/28/2010 11:17:05 AM , Rating: -1
Most people have no idea what the hell they are talking about - this is all due to the fact that we are all only able to see only a portion of the data that is coming in.

Media really loves to exploit actions made by companies like apple in order to ride a wave of, "lets make them look bad."

How many of you posting comments of dissaproval use google? How many of you that dissagree with apples decision use google?
How many of you use a smart phone and have downloaded an app?

Well here is some news for you all - Your information is being gathered, stored, and used in so many ways without detailed public disclosure.

it is said that 1 in every five droid apps store your personal information. Apple has just decided to say, we're doing this, and we're letting you know up front, rather than hide it from you."

Thank you apple for the choice...

If you're going to hate on apple - hate on the fact that they treat their valued customers as if they owe them for the service that they have provided to society, and that they ignore legitimate complaints - ie "you're holding it wrong." For that, I will say - F U Jobs -

RE: Delusion in media.
By Spivonious on 6/28/2010 11:55:52 AM , Rating: 2
It's not the storing of information that people worry about. Apple is actively tracking your position with the GPS feature, and this feature cannot be disabled.

And FYI, I don't use Google nor own a smart phone.

RE: Delusion in media.
By Uncle on 6/28/2010 1:11:17 PM , Rating: 1
All phones have a built in gps,its some number that distinguishes you from the next phone.Kind of like your IP address when connected to the internet. The only way to shut it down is by pulling the battery out. I don't use a cell phone, so on this one I have to say don't single out apple. Its also another way for law enforcement to find you if they absolutely have to.

RE: Delusion in media.
By futrtrubl on 6/28/2010 5:58:13 PM , Rating: 2
Wow, you really have NO idea what GPS is do you?
GPS is not a number. GPS is a system that is only in select phones, those phones being the ones that say they have GPS. On any phone other than iPhones after the privacy agreement update you can turn it off without shutting the phone off (which is what this article is about!)
Of course cell phones have unique IDs otherwise how would the system know where to send the call, but this has nothing to do with GPS.
Read for more information.


RE: Delusion in media.
By Unfixedyouth on 6/28/10, Rating: 0
RE: Delusion in media.
By Spivonious on 6/28/2010 2:21:40 PM , Rating: 2
You must be new here if you think that I can vote you down and still reply. Replying removes any ratings you've made.

So I can't comment on things that I don't have direct experience with? What world do you live in?

RE: Delusion in media.
By kmmatney on 6/28/2010 1:34:02 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, you can disable it - please do not spread the myth that you cannot. It is right there in "Settings | General | Location Services". You can turn it on or off.

However this will make your map feature not work, so you have to turn it back on to use the map, and then turn it back off again, if you only want location services for the map. There are also many apps that use the GPS feature, such as Zillow, Motion-X (I use to track my mileage while jogging or cycling),, etc...I find that I use too many apps that rely on GPS, so I leave the service turned on.

You can also choose to allow individual apps to access location services, many Apps don't save this setting, and ask for your permission every time. Shazam is an example - a bit annoying.

The Android privacy statement is also pretty vague, and they have the similar features. They can be turned off, but need to be turned on to use certain features of the phone.

RE: Delusion in media.
By ghost101 on 6/28/2010 2:42:18 PM , Rating: 2
In addition, any application from google marketplace which uses the location services has warnings when installing. In fact it wanrs you about every feature it potentially uses, so things like address book, bookmarks, call state etc. etc.

RE: Delusion in media.
By tim851 on 6/28/2010 3:04:33 PM , Rating: 1
Apple has just decided to say, we're doing this, and we're letting you know up front, rather than hide it from you.

Well, they said that they're doing SOMETHING. They don't say what it is exactly and how they're going to use it.

Which is all that this inquiry by the German government is all about.

RE: Delusion in media.
By JKflipflop98 on 6/29/10, Rating: -1
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