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Apple I Phone Does Not Track Your Every Move As Reported.

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posted on Apr, 21 2011 @ 11:49 PM
apparently the US govrnment made a law
that requires all the phone manufacturers to leave a back door to total access..
like turning on your mike or your camera at will
or acertaining yor present and past location etc
totally evil
I also hear the guv has bragged about having PREDICTIVE software to figure where you are GOING

after all patriots, homeschoolers, christians, veterans, raw milk producers, oathkeepers,
being terrorists by law after all
the government has to keep everyone else safe...

posted on Apr, 22 2011 @ 04:58 AM
New analysis shows that not only is the data collected and stored on the phone, but it is transmitted back to Apple (and Google in the case of android) along with a unique identifier. In other words, they are literally tracking you. They admit they are storing it in a database to collect data on where you go.

posted on Apr, 22 2011 @ 05:25 AM
reply to post by Blazer

Wow. Good find. I stand corrected.

posted on Apr, 22 2011 @ 05:35 AM
This is gonna be one helluve interesting class action lawsuit
Better ready my popcorn.

posted on Apr, 22 2011 @ 01:55 PM
OK. Lucky for us this story is still developing. It appears that we are going to be able to deny ignorance here but it is probably not going to help many ATSers who are concerned about this get any sleep.

I am going to post some choice selections from these updates and allow readers to follow the links for the complete details. I will provide a digest of the material at the end of the post...

First the author of the original Blog post that I cited above...

My posting on my investigations into the content of the consolidated.db file on the iPhone has gotten some 40,000 views, so far, thanks to the magic of Slashdot. There have been a couple of worthwhile items that came up in comments, and I wanted to collect them into a follow-up posting here.

First, Alex Levinson, a researcher who’s done academic work on iOS forensics, posted an excellent column on this which probably deserved to make it to Slashdot more than mine did. It turns out that the existence of this file was not only known, but mentioned in Sean Morrisey’s book on iOS forensics, to which Alex was a contributor.

Second, even without a handy database of what is increasingly appearing to be cell tower and WiFi hotspot locations, people should be aware that their cell phone—as a simple consequence of its operation—”tracks” their movements, simply to enable the hand-off of the phone from one cel tower to the next. Your carrier maintains this information for some period of time, and will provide it to law enforcement in response to an appropriate subpoena.

Interestingly, a German politician, Malte Spitz, sued his carrier, Deutsche Telekomm, to get a copy of the records that they had maintained on him, and discovered that, between August 2009 and February 2010, they had recorded his geographical location some 35,000 times. Zeit Online has a fascinating visualization of Mr. Spitz’s movement and activities developed from this data.

Finally, and sadly, Brian Chen over at Wired has a follow-on to his original column where he gets off to a bad start by noting that people had been “spooked” by the revelation of the existence of this file on their iPhones, but without noting that it was his own headline the previous day—which claimed that iPhones were “tracking [their owners'] every move”, inaccurately as it turns out—which engendered a lot of the “spooking”.

If you’re concerned about this file’s being backed up to your desktop, I’d recommend that you turn on encrypted backups, which can be accomplished through iTunes, as this posting on Techland explains. I still haven’t got the slightest idea why people would be particularly worried about thieves getting this particular file off their desktops, but not (apparently) concerned about their address books, their email archives, their document folders or their calendars. People are strange.

And now from the Alex Levinson Article referenced by the above author:

1) Apple is not collecting this data.
And to suggest otherwise is completely misrepresenting Apple. I quote: Apple is gathering this data, but it’s clearly intentional, as the database is being restored across backups, and even device migrations. Apple is not harvesting this data from your device. This is data on the device that you as the customer purchased and unless they can show concrete evidence supporting this claim – network traffic analysis of connections to Apple servers – I rebut this claim in full. Through my research in this field and all traffic analysis I have performed, not once have I seen this data traverse a network. As rich of data as this might be, it’s actually illegal under California state law:
(a) No person or entity in this state shall use an electronic tracking device to determine the location or movement of a person.

I don’t think that’s a legal battle Apple wants to face considering the sale of over 100 million iDevices worldwide. That raises the question – how is this data used? It’s used all the time by software running on the phone. Built-In applications such as Maps and Camera use this geolocational data to operate. Apple provides an API for access to location awareness called Core Location. Here is Apple’s description of this softare library:

The Core Location framework lets you determine the current location or heading associated with a device. The framework uses the available hardware to determine the user’s position and heading. You use the classes and protocols in this framework to configure and schedule the delivery of location and heading events. You can also use it to define geographic regions and monitor when the user crosses the boundaries of those regions.

2) This hidden file is neither new nor secret.

It’s just moved. Location services have been available to the Apple device for some time. Understand what this file is – a log generated by the various radios and sensors located within the device. This file is utilized by several operations on the device that actually is what makes this device pretty “smart”. This file existed in a different form prior to iOS 4, but not in form it is today.

Currently, consolidated.db lies within the “User Data Partition” on the device. This is a logical filesystem that maintains non-system level privileges and where most of the data is stored. When you perform an iOS Backup through iTunes, it is backing up this partition. Prior to iOS 4, a file called h-cells.plist actually existed in the /root/Library/caches/locationd folder, but with hidden access from other software and applications. h-cells.plist contained much of the same information regarding baseband radio locations as consolidated.db does now, but in Apple Property List format rather than sqlite3. Through my work with various law enforcement agencies, we’ve used h-cells.plist on devices older than iOS 4 to harvest geolocational evidence from iOS devices.

OK. So if I am understanding this correctly then it is probably safer to say that if 'The Authorities' want to know where you are then they can subpoena the phone provider and they must cooperate.

Otherwise, you are certainly not being 'tracked' and what the phone is doing is collecting geographical data just so that it can operate as intended.

Spooky? Yes. Should you take it personally. No.

So it is a bit of a hybrid situation here. Yes the phone is tracking you but that is what you paid for when you bought the phone and those are the services you signed up for when you signed for the service plan.
If the phone did not collect and process this data on some level your phone would stop working as soon as you got out of range of the first cell tower. So that is what is really going on.

If you are still concerned then go and read the details of Alex Levinson's article. He makes it clear that this story is in fact not new and is a couple of years old. He takes to task those responsible for whipping this topic in to its current state of frenzy.

Have a good morning.

posted on Apr, 26 2011 @ 09:10 PM
I don't know if anyone will make it back to this thread. Just wanted to say that I realize now that I was dead wrong. I am eating Crow Pie right at this moment.

Boy, let's hope I was right about Cthulhu.

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