Your iPhone is Spying on You

Did you know the iPhone records your location? Why am I not surprised? No matter; this has got to stop.

I hope you saw John Cox's piece today on the iPhone surreptitiously tracking the location of users. It seems the iPhone records the location of users in a file that, of course, no one at Apple ever acknowledged the existence of. Hey, is this just something in the firmware that was left over from testing? Or is it part of Apple's not-so-secret mission to track users for advertising (read: more money for Apple) purposes?

You know, I don't care. But I do know that it's time for major, federal-level legislation to once and for all define what about you belongs to you and what is free game for advertisers, credit agencies, and, lord love a duck, the people who build our handsets.

If this is intentional, I'm outraged. If it's an accident, Apple had better fess up quick and do something about it. It's impossible today to keep secrets, as we all know, whether we're a big corporation like Apple or just an individual seeking to use mobile and wireless technology for fun and/or profit without fear of being spied upon. If any other company out there has such designs, they'd better fess up too.

Now, I'm expressing this opinion just as an analyst and fan of civil liberties, such as the freedom not be tracked by a handset vendor, which is after all there in the US Constitution somewhere. I mean, I personally don't care. I'm not an iPhone user because I object to Apple's closed-system approach to what should be, IMHO, open. Thus I use an Android phone, and Google would, of course, never do anything like this. Right? I mean, they build operating systems, and have nothing to do with advertising.

C'mon Congress. Do something useful for a change.

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