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Google collects Android location even when disabled

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Gingerbread Man

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Post Posted November 22nd, 2017, 2:19 pm

Google collects Android users’ locations even when location services are disabled | Quartz
by Keith Collins
November 21st, 2017


Many people realize that smartphones track their locations. But what if you actively turn off location services, haven’t used any apps, and haven’t even inserted a carrier SIM card?

Even if you take all of those precautions, phones running Android software gather data about your location and send it back to Google when they’re connected to the internet, a Quartz investigation has revealed.

Since the beginning of 2017, Android phones have been collecting the addresses of nearby cellular towers—even when location services are disabled—and sending that data back to Google. The result is that Google, the unit of Alphabet behind Android, has access to data about individuals’ locations and their movements that go far beyond a reasonable consumer expectation of privacy.

Quartz observed the data collection occur and contacted Google, which confirmed the practice.

The cell tower addresses have been included in information sent to the system Google uses to manage push notifications and messages on Android phones for the past 11 months, according to a Google spokesperson. They were never used or stored, the spokesperson said, and the company is now taking steps to end the practice after being contacted by Quartz. By the end of November, the company said, Android phones will no longer send cell-tower location data to Google, at least as part of this particular service, which consumers cannot disable.

[…]

Grumpus

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Post Posted November 23rd, 2017, 8:39 am

Thought I saw something on the data slurping. Permissionless data slurping
there's also another where Spain apparently fined Google through the maps side of things.
As a side note, 5 or so years back in discussions with a couple of NSA people it was revealed the phones do not have to be on as long as the serial numbers are in skilled hands.
One of the things I noted with new flip phones is increased methods to reveal these serial numbers, wonder why? :-k

Gingerbread Man

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Post Posted November 23rd, 2017, 9:31 am

Grumpus wrote:Spain apparently fined Google through the maps side of things.

I'm not sure which incident you're referring to. There was a Spain & France fine from 2013–2014 related to Google's privacy policy. There was also a €2.42 billion ($3.6 billion) fine handed out this year for manipulating search results to favor their own shopping service. There are probably others.

Let's not forget in 2010 Google Street View hoovered people's private files, then didn't delete them.
Google Street View Cams Collected Private Content From WiFi | Wired
Google faces new Street View data controversy | The Guardian

Grumpus

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Post Posted November 24th, 2017, 7:45 am

Seems to me the hoovering of wifi is still going on by thieves, snoopy neighbors and charlatans.
I think the Spain ruling was within the last month.

mightyglydd

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Post Posted November 24th, 2017, 8:17 am

Grumpus wrote:snoopy neighbors and charlatans.

Image
#KeepFightingMichael

Grumpus

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Post Posted November 24th, 2017, 1:01 pm

@mightyglydd - That's them.

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