Apple offers Software Updates and Answers to remedy the fiasco of iPhone Tracking


Apple will release free iOS updates next week, responding to the ongoing iPhone tracking fiasco. Specifically, the updates will fix some bugs and alter the way iOS functions, with regards the use of location services:

  • reduces the size of the crowd-sourced Wi-Fi hotspot and cell tower database cached on the iPhone,
  • ceases backing up this cache, and
  • deletes this cache entirely when Location Services is turned off.

These upgrades are mostly invisible to end-users. Apple also released series of Q&A to address some of the concerns raised during the past 1 week, since the discovery of iPhone tracker.

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Location-Based Services and Privacy Violations by Apple iPhones and Google Androids


Imagine a room, a command center of sorts, illuminated by dozens of monitors in front of which nameless observers sit scrutinizing the data displayed before them. On the room walls are bigger displays; one showing the map of the country, some showing overhead views of several cities while others track the movements of selected individuals, identified only as numerics. On the door we see an emblem; not the crest of the Central Intelligence Agency or the National Security Agency… but an Apple.

This imagery is not from Tony Scott’s Enemy of the State, but rather it was what came to my mind when I read about the discovery made by two security researchers – Pete Warden, Founder of Data Science Toolkit and Alasdair Allan, Senior Research Fellow, University of Exeter, that the Apple’s iOS 4.x mobile operating system records the user’s location for iPhone and iPad into a hidden file on the devices, named “consolidated.db”.

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How Facebook can turn you into mindless drones?

jaron lanier

I had a chat with a friend of mine the other day. He seemed down so I asked him if everything was OK, to which he replied that his week had gotten off to a bad start and it was making him depressed. Treading carefully, I asked if he would like to share. His answer shocked me.

“My friend defriended me on Facebook”, he replied.

He elaborated further, saying that this friend, whom he had known since high school and whom he had been contact with on and off throughout the years (as opposed to regular contact) had one day decided to reduce his Facebook contacts to only those he often stayed in touch with, and since he only met up or talked with this guy once in a blue moon, he ended up in the dreaded “Defriended” list. And he wasn’t the only one. A few other school buddies also didn’t make the cut and were equally depressed.

I thought this was utterly ridiculous but sensing that his sadness was genuine, didn’t make a fuss about it. But seriously, getting depressed because you were removed from someone’s contact list on an online app?

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