Apple's Legal Team Clarifies Position on Location-based Tracking
July 20, 2010 11:16 AM
comment(s) - last by
Response to government adds more details about when Apple plans to snoop on its customers
Following a letter sent to Apple CEO Steven Jobs expressing concerns about Apple's
plan to track its users' locations
, Reps. Joe Barton (R-Texas) and Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) have at last
received a response
from Cupertino. Penned by Bruce Sewell, general counsel for Apple, the response elucidates the company's plans in much more detail.
In the letter Sewell says that forcing users to agree to the new terms (language concerning the tracking was included in an iTunes update, which was uninstallable if you did not click to agree) was merely to help inform users of the change.
He said any user can turn off location-aware services, which are found on iPhones and iPads running iPhone OS 4.0. Though he does not explicitly state it, these services appear to be enabled by default on new iOS 4.0 devices. A small icon on the services bar shows customers that location services are running.
Customers also have the option to permanently opt out of tracking at
. Despite ambiguity in the contract language, Sewell indicates that Apple will respect customers' wishes and
track them if they turn off location services in the OS or sign up at the opt-out page.
For users who intentionally or unintentionally
allow Apple to "collect, use and share precise location data, including real-time geographic location", Sewell assures them that the data will only be kept for 6 months. All data submitted to third parties will be made anonymous, as well.
The company writes, "Apple does not share any interest-based or location-based information about individual customers, including the zip code calculated by the iAd server, with advertisers. Apple retains a record of each ad sent to a particular device in a separate iAd database, accessible only by Apple, to ensure that customers do not receive overly repetitive and/or duplicative ads for administrative purposes."
The Democrat Representative Markey received the letter with mild praise for Apple, stating, "Apple's responses provided additional information about how it uses location data and the ability of consumers to exercise control over a variety of features on Apple's products, and I appreciate the company's response."
Republican Representative Barton sounded a bit more skeptical, stating, "While I applaud Apple for responding to our questions. I remain concerned about privacy policies that run on for pages and pages. I hope every business uses information for advertising and marketing purposes that will work toward more transparency and complete disclosure about their practices, as well as robust security for the information they hold."
AT&T and Apple recently lost
over 100,000 iPad subscribers' personal email addresses
. The issue hits close to home as the iPad and iPhone are
among both politicians on both sides of the aisle in Washington D.C. Overseas, foreign politicians are very concerned about Apple's increased surveillance of users; in fact Germany has
threatened action against Apple
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: If i wouldbin a Aple user i would have serius problems whit Opt-out
7/20/2010 6:39:27 PM
It makes perfect sense, people should get a screen ware the get the option to get "in" to the location advertising, ore "out"
There are ofc some benefits of getting in to it.
Lets say you want to eat something, you fill in to you iPhone/Droid that your looking for food.
This information is send to a server together whit your location.
Server sends you back all the restaurants whit in driving/walking distance, maybe even whit the daily specialty.
For me this would be still acceptably as long as its only sending loc. data on
But other people are maybe comfortable whit giving up more data.
Something like, when they walk past a supermarket, they want to be notified what is in offer that week.
That would be for me unacceptable, but there are other that are happy to give that information up, and think they will be better of in the long run, i am not one of them do!
For me its simple if Apple really care about there costumers and not only about $$$ then they let there costumers them self have the choice.
But apparently these days are long gone for Apple, and they are against everything they stood for 25 years ago.
"If you mod me down, I will become more insightful than you can possibly imagine." -- Slashdot
Germany Calls Apple's Plan to Track iPhone Users "Unacceptable"
June 28, 2010, 10:28 AM
So Long Privacy: Apple Bans Apps, Music for Customers Who Opt Out of Tracking
June 22, 2010, 11:10 AM
U.S. VP Joe Biden and Washington Politicians Love the iPad
June 10, 2010, 9:49 AM
AT&T's Gaping Hole Exposes 114,000 iPad 3G Buyers' Email Addresses
June 9, 2010, 5:55 PM
Amazon Seeks FAA Permission to Test 50 MPH Flying Drones
July 11, 2014, 12:32 PM
Samsung Fails to Launch its Tizen-based Smartphone in Moscow, Unsure of New Launch Date
July 11, 2014, 9:00 AM
China's Top State-run Broadcaster Considers iOS Tracking Feature is a National Security Threat
July 11, 2014, 8:25 AM
Verizon Wireless Offers Up $100* LG G3, Will Be Available July 17
July 10, 2014, 4:21 PM
Satya Nadella Says Microsoft is a "Productivity and Platform Company" for the Mobile/Cloud World
July 10, 2014, 12:29 PM
Motorola Touts Its Moto 360 Smartwatch in Another Teaser Video
July 10, 2014, 9:26 AM
Most Popular Articles
Apple's iPhone, iPad Update iOS 7.1.2 is Badly Broken for Some
July 8, 2014, 2:00 PM
Despite Legal Threats Google Begins Posting Warnings of ISP Throttling
July 7, 2014, 5:52 PM
Google Steps up Moral Censorship, Hogties All Ads With Sexual Content
July 4, 2014, 2:00 PM
Your Uncharged Smartphone, Tablet May Prevent You from Boarding U.S.-bound Flights
July 6, 2014, 11:11 PM
Buzz Aldrin Says First Astronauts to Set Foot on Mars Should Never Return Home
July 9, 2014, 9:46 AM
Latest Blog Posts
Space Terrorism is a Looming Threat For the United States
Apr 23, 2014, 7:47 PM
Facebook Aims to Provide Internet to "Every Person in the World" with Drones, Satellites
Apr 1, 2014, 10:20 AM
Retail Mobile Sites Experience Outages in Light of Simplexity's Bankruptcy
Mar 14, 2014, 8:48 AM
Tesla vs. BMW: Who Has the Safer EV?
Feb 1, 2014, 2:56 PM
Justice Leaks Details of Next HTC One Two Flagship Phone
Dec 5, 2013, 4:04 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information