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Get Ready To Be PLUGGED Into.....

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posted on May, 30 2010 @ 09:55 AM
Mobile Data: A Gold Mine for Telcos

Cell phone companies are finding that they're sitting on a gold mine--in the form of the call records of their subscribers.

Researchers in academia, and increasingly within the mobile industry, are working with large databases showing where and when calls and texts are made and received to reveal commuting habits, how far people travel for public events, and even significant social trends.

With potential applications ranging from city planning to marketing, such studies could also provide a new source of revenue for the cell phone companies. "Because cell phones have become so ubiquitous, mining the data they generate can really revolutionize the study of human behavior," says Ramón Cáceres, a lead researcher at AT&T's research labs in Florham Park, NJ.

If you were an AT&T subscriber and were near Los Angeles or New York between March 15 and May 15 last year, there's a 5 percent chance that your data was crunched by Cáceres and his colleagues in a study of the travel habits of the company's subscribers. The researchers amassed millions of call records from hundreds of thousands of users in 891 zip codes, covering every New York borough, 10 New Jersey counties, as well as Los Angeles, Orange, and Ventura counties in California.

While many of us get angry about Facebook, Myspace, & other social Networking sites when they breach our privacy for commercial dollars, now wireless entities are taking it a little further.

Wireless carriers know everything about us. With the advent in technology that allows us to reach around the globe at unimaginable speeds and to do that while not being plugged directly into a wire is even more revolutionary. We rely so much on such technology while being mobile. With new Televisions now becoming wireless themselves, the PC might be out of date technology.

Businesses know that individuals are more mobile, wired technology does not provide the customer base like it used to. Lets just look at television alone, most of us just DVR our episodes only to skip the advertisements. Popular networks of the past are now losing ratings fast because many episodes can be watched over the internet.

Our wireless carriers are now being used just for that purpose, to analyze our behavior for commercial purposes. We are being tapped without us having any knowledge of it for our phone records, where we are spending our time, what destinations we travel to, what website we visit, what are we searching for, how long we talk to someone, when/what/where do we text, etc etc.

The End of PRIVACY

I was under the impression that any such revealing of our communications can only be done under a warrant from a court.

It makes me think about those new Google phones with Google OS/Android OS. Google is known for storing our online searches & IP's. What is to stop them from doing the same with our daily communications.


The World illustrates the provenance of those who traveled from all over the U.S. and the world to Washington D.C. to witness President Obama's inauguration. It interprets the variations in call activity as flows of people arriving in Washington, D.C. and then leaving the capital to go back to their home states and countries. A world map shows links between Washington, D.C. and countries abroad. Dynamic packets of information represent 100 calls for U.S. States and 10 calls for foreign countries depending on whether call activity increased or decreased in relation to the previous hour. The time-line on the bottom of the screen connects back to The City visualization by showing the overall trend of call activity in Washington, D.C. during the week of the Presidential Inauguration.


This bonus version illustrates the call activity in a visualization that is easy to understand. In the center of the screen, the map of Washington, D.C. is overlaid with a 3-D color-coded animated surface of square tiles (1 tile represents an area of 150 x 150 meters). Each tile rises and turns red as call activity increases and likewise drops and turns yellow as activity decreases. In the background, an animated map of the United States embraces Washington, D.C. and highlights the normalized contributions of the 50 U.S. States, where those with strong increases in call activity light up and get closer to the viewer. The time-line at the bottom illustrates the overall trend of call activity in the city during the week of the Presidential Inauguration.

The above animations provide the usage of wireless communications during Obama's Inauguration. These animations just highlight activity during that day, what these animations fail to show is other type of data that is being mined such as content?

Are you okay with this mining of our very personal info by our carriers?

[edit on 30-5-2010 by prionace glauca]

posted on Jul, 2 2010 @ 03:21 PM
excellent post. people need to take care and recognize that not everything is so great as it seems. the old "it wouldnt happen to me" mentality is a help to no one.

its a little old info, but i doubt the practice has stopped.

Sensitive documents surface in AT&T-NSA spy lawsuit

lets not forget about mark klein, the whistleblower who brought the NSA rooms to our attention.

the lawsuits by the EFF went nowhere thanks to the FISA Amendment

the spying isnt limited to cell phones either, Voice over IP calling is routinely monitored as well. now im not saying dont own a cell phone. just be careful with what you do with that cell phone.

here is an index from one of cryptomes mirror sites with the various privacy policies of telecoms and other lawful spying guides for corporations

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