Phone Location Tracking Is Way Worse Than We Thought

Constant Surveillance

If you own a phone, it’s almost certainly tracking your every move and sending the information to a handful of private companies that operate with virtually no regulatory oversight.

That’s according to a massive investigation by the opinion desk at the New York Times, during which reporters gained access to a tiny slice of one company’s massive stores of location data.

The investigation reveals just how much information these companies have on the average person and makes one thing very clear: any company claiming to protect or anonymize your data is either lying or being deliberately misleading.

Cars Are Secretly Spying on Us

Spy Car

Your car is likely capturing hundreds of data points about you and your driving, and secretly sending it to the manufacturer.

Hacking into a 2017 Chevrolet for The Washington Post, tech writer Geoffrey Fowler learned that the car had been tracking his location, monitoring activity on the cell phone he had connected, and collecting other data points that it sent straight to General Motors. It’s a disturbing revelation that serves as yet another reminder that digital privacy is a myth.

Big Data, Money

If he hadn’t hacked into the car with the help of an engineer, Fowler never would have learned about the comprehensive data collection and tracking — it wasn’t disclosed anywhere on the car or in the instruction manual. And most troubling, none of the information legally belonged to him.