Apple faces privacy breach charges with its secret user tracking file

 
on April 21 2011 6:38 AM
Apple faces privacy breach charges with its secret user tracking file.
Researchers at a technology conference in San Francisco on Wednesday have accused Apple of breaching the privacy line of consumers by storing user’s location and other details in a secret file. Reuters.

Researchers at a technology conference in San Francisco on Wednesday have accused Apple of breaching the privacy line of consumers by storing user's location and other details in a secret file.

The file called consolidated.db. stores latitude-longitude coordinates along with a timestamp.

The two security programmers have accused the company that their iPhones and 3G iPads saves the location details of users and then the data is copied over to the hard drive when the device is synchronized with a computer.

The report has instigated speculations across the Internet and many are debating on the serious implications of the programme as a major violation of privacy.  Using the system, hackers will now be able to acquire easy access to user's location.

The secretive collection of location data crosses the privacy line. Apple should know better than to track iPhone users in this way, the New York Times quoted Marc Rotenberg, executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center stating.

The researchers, Alasdair Allan and Pete Warden, presented the paper at the O'Reilly Where 2.0 conference, which is a gathering of experts dealing on location technology.

In a blog post, Allan informed that they are not sure why Apple is gathering this data, but it's clearly intentional, as the database is being restored across backups, and even device migrations.

Although attempts have been made to contact Apple's Product Security team, the company has not yet confirmed the report or revealed whether the programme has been disabled.

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