New Research Claims iPhones and iPads Store Location Data in Secret File
New iPhone security concerns are being raised after researchers discovered the device has been storing location data and essentially tracking your every move.
According to a group of researchers that were interviewed by The Guardian, the iPhone, iPad, and specifically their current operating system, iOS 4, is storing it’s longitude, latitude, and a timestamp in a secret file. The file itself is stored on the computers that users have used to sync with iTunes. This is of course a concern as pretty much anyone will be able to access the data with the use of a program or by simply jailbreaking the device and accessing the location data directly.
The device is apparently the only current gen smartphone deploying this type of tracking. The researchers note they have not found similar tracking features in Google’s Android operating system, iOS and Apple’s main competitor.
Pete Warden, one of the researchers involved in the study, said, “Apple has made it possible for almost anybody – a jealous spouse, a private detective – with access to your phone or computer to get detailed information about where you've been”
The researchers speculate Apple may be storing this data in anticipation of new location-based features that require a history of your whereabouts. Most mobile cellular networks already track the location of mobile phones but only make the data available to police regarding criminal and legal matters.
You can learn more about the research project that lead to the discovery and learn how to access your device’s location data here.
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