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  (Source: dvice.com)
Lawmakers believe privacy laws should be applied to third-party developers, wireless carriers and mobile handset makers

Lawmakers investigated the collection, use, and storage of consumer location data from four U.S. wireless carriers, and determined that mobile privacy safeguards should also be applied to third-party app developers 

Mobile privacy has become a serious issue for some carriers that choose to use methods of tracking in order to target ads to consumers. For instance, Apple used a new feature on iOS 4 to capture location data on its a users through their iPhone or iPad. What's more is that Apple stored this information in a local file, and when a user buys a new iPhone or iPad, this file is transferred to the new device.  

In addition, other reports have found that Android-based phones are mining personal data as well, but are not storing it in a file. 

With security problems like this at hand, lawmakers have requested information from Verizon Wireless, AT&T Inc., T-Mobile and Sprint Nextel Corp. regarding their privacy practices, including the collection, use and storage of user location data.

Representatives Edward Markey and Joe Barton, co-chairs of the House Bi-Partisan Privacy Caucus, received letters from all four carriers on Thursday. After reviewing these letters, Markey and Barton agreed that third-party developers should also have to abide by mobile privacy safeguards.

"Third-party developers can access the location of customers at any time they want," said Barton. "They shouldn't have free reign over your location data and personally identifiable information."

Markey noted that user privacy protection must be a priority for wireless carriers, application developers and mobile handset makers.  

Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller will hold a hearing on consumer privacy on May 10, where Google and Apple will be in attendance. While many hope that this sort of legislative attention will change privacy laws and make third-party developers abide by them, the outcome is uncertain at this point. 



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By MadDogMorgan on 4/29/2011 3:57:06 PM , Rating: 2
Criminal group develops a simple game app. You try it, you like it, your wife installs it too. Without you knowing it, this innocuous "game" app is sending your location information to a server, storing it in a database. They run a time correlation query, find out where you are all night (your house location), then query for a time when both your devices are away from home at the same time. Then they send their "guys" over to get some of the extra stuff that they need, and you don't.

What if: The police can access all location data any time they want. A store gets robbed, and in their zeal to solve the crime the police access location data from the major carriers and "round up" everyone who was near the store at the time of the robbery. You miss your flight to that important meeting that was going to make millions for your company, your wife asks "what were you doing in THAT neighborhood, at THAT time of the day?" ...

THAT can't happen, you think???
https://www.infosecisland.com/blogview/13163-State...

" Michigan State Police have been using data extraction devices to collect information from the cell phones of motorists detained for minor traffic infractions.

The mobile forensics units made by CelleBrite have the ability to download the data stored on more than 3000 models of cell phone, and are capable of defeating password protection. "

"Third-party developers can access the location of customers at any time they want," said Barton. (from the above article on Daily Tech)

Courts have been split on whether warrants are required to peruse files on gadgets after an arrest, with police typically arguing that the Fourth Amendment's prohibition on unusual searches doesn't apply.

http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/michigan-police-c...

http://news.cnet.com/8301-31921_3-20056344-281.htm...




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