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  • Google Joins Apple in Mobile Tracking Scandal


    Google has formally joined Apple on the list of tech giants involved in mobile tracking scandals. Following weeks of controversy stemming from the recent discovery that Apple's iOS tracks user location information, on Tuesday Google joined the party as South Korean police raided Google's Seoul offices. The raid was promoted by concern and accompanying reports that Google is collecting sensitive user information without informed consent from customers.

    According to Reuters, South Korean police have been snooping around Google's AdMob advertising division and the findings lead to the sudden and surprising search. "We suspect AdMob collected personal location information without consent or approval from the Korean Communication Commission," an official with the South Korean police stated. For now, Google will only confirm that the raid did, indeed, happen. No comment from the company other than to express Google's cooperation with any subsequent investigation.

    "Every technology has a flip side. Location-based services benefit customers by helping them find nearby restaurants, gas stations and other places with their smartphones," Kim Kwang-jo, a computer science professor at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, tells Reuters. "But it could potentially violate consumer privacy. There are loopholes in location-based services, and companies should get consent from customers to collect location data."

    Yesterday, we reported that Apple is preparing a remedy for the iOS tracking bug and will release iOS 4.3.3 in the coming weeks to hopefully end this saga once and for all. For the time being, however, it isn't clear what - of anything - Google has potentially done wrong or how the search and mobile giant will remedy any discovered user privacy violations.

    Source: Reuters
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Google Joins Apple in Mobile Tracking Scandal started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 35 Comments
    1. StealthBravo's Avatar
      StealthBravo -
      Quote Originally Posted by one1 View Post
      anyone with little snitch knows what google collects. no surprises, as some of you only know the smallest bit of it all.
      Yea, it usually surprises people the first time they launch little snitch and see all the apps calling home.
    1. redhotlog's Avatar
      redhotlog -
      The real question is who cares? Like honestly? People are actually getting upset because some company can track where your phone has been? Oh noes!
    1. StealthBravo's Avatar
      StealthBravo -
      Yet they are on foursquare and gowalla all the time.
    1. mmaboi21's Avatar
      mmaboi21 -
      I honestly think it's deeper than a company tracking our location.
      I have a feeling the tracking goes as deep as government.
    1. mmaboi21's Avatar
      mmaboi21 -
      I know I'm going to take some heat for this. Haha

      It's just my theory peeps
    1. Mrteacup's Avatar
      Mrteacup -
      Zzzzzzz heard this like 3 weeks ago old news...
    1. B7..RS4's Avatar
      B7..RS4 -
      Whose's up next black berry?
    1. Donnutt's Avatar
      Donnutt -
      My buddy who switched from the HTC incredible to the iPhone said he was sure google has always been tracking their phones. The gps was always on and the battery was always dead. Doh! In the 47 page iTunes agreement we all agreed to, I believe it says apple can collect certain info from our iDevices.
      You can't always get a fantastic product without giving up some of your privacy is how I see it.
    1. unison999's Avatar
      unison999 -
      They found what people?
      Cops ceased some record at a Ad company in Korea, which by the way does not mean it applies to Google phones around the world. You do not know the laws in Korea and neither do I, also I did not see the evidance the cops ceased. I will hold my opinion until the findings gets released.
      Have I seen the proof of Google tracking people? No.
      Yet people are so sure that Google is guilty of tracking.
      Have I seen proof of iPhone logging my position and sending to Apple? Yes. But people here say I am over reacting, and Apple is not tracking me. I understand this is a forum for Apple stuff, but damn major double standards.
    1. Donnutt's Avatar
      Donnutt -
      People here may be jumping to conclusions, but let's be honest.
      Google runs on advertising. They are not writing free software out of the goodness of their hearts. When I am on a google site on ANY device, I receive personalized ads for where I am at that exact moment. It is all based on location.
      Apple makes money on devices, software, music, and the app store. They make devices people WANT. Their primary interest is making these items because they know it makes alot of money. Customer first, advertising second. Yes, they have location services for iAds, but you CAN easily opt out of there services by visiting a web site. You can not with google.
      And if that's not enough for you, the first time you turn an android device on, it tells you that google may collect info on your location, and you have to agree to it in order to use the device.

      I'm not saying it is infallible proof that google is tracking your every move, but let's not kid ourselves. Google RUNS on marketing and advertising. Pure and simple.
    1. <(O)> Device's Avatar
      <(O)> Device -
      Apple + Google = Big Brother(s)
    1. Donnutt's Avatar
      Donnutt -
      Yup! And we still line up to buy their products.
    1. <(O)> Device's Avatar
      <(O)> Device -
      Quote Originally Posted by Donnutt View Post
      Yup! And we still line up to buy their products.
      Were all brainless Llamas marching to our imminent demise. xD
    1. Donnutt's Avatar
      Donnutt -
      Quote Originally Posted by Device View Post
      Were all brainless Llamas marching to our imminent demise. xD
      And loving it! Hey, it's not like I'm going to stop buying them! They are shiny!
    1. <(O)> Device's Avatar
      <(O)> Device -
      Quote Originally Posted by Donnutt View Post
      And loving it! Hey, it's not like I'm going to stop buying them! They are shiny!
      I like shiny! (but in all seriousness I like the products I'm not upset lol)