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Earlier today, we noted that Apple had updated its iTunes Store terms to include information on the company's forthcoming iAd mobile advertising platform and steps users could take to opt out of the collection and sharing of personal data for the purposes of serving targeted and more relevant ads.

The Los Angeles Times points to a somewhat-related change in Apple's privacy policy included in the revised iTunes Store terms which specifies that Apple may collect "precise," "real-time geographic location" data for users of its products. Under the updated privacy policy, the data may be used by Apple and unspecified "partners and licensees" in order to improve services and advertising.
The company says the data is anonymous and does not personally identify users. Analysts have shown, however, that large, specific data sets can be used to identify people based on behavior patterns.
The report notes that the new privacy policy does not specify which third parties may receive access to the collected data, nor does it mention how long Apple may keep the data. The report also quotes the relevant passage of the updated terms:
To provide location-based services on Apple products, Apple and our partners and licensees may collect, use, and share precise location data, including the real-time geographic location of your Apple computer or device. This location data is collected anonymously in a form that does not personally identify you and is used by Apple and our partners and licensees to provide and improve location-based products and services. For example, we may share geographic location with application providers when you opt in to their location services.

Some location-based services offered by Apple, such as the MobileMe "Find My iPhone" feature, require your personal information for the feature to work.
The specific change to Apple's policy regarding location-based services and data collection is part of a much broader overhaul of the company's privacy policy involving a restructuring of the document while expanding certain areas and simplifying others. The changes appear to represent the first significant change to the company's privacy in three years, and with location-services and other mobile technologies having seen tremendous advancement during that time, Apple has had to update its documentation to reflect the new reality.

Article Link: Apple Updates Privacy Policy to Disclose Real-Time Location Tracking of Devices
 

GJSchaller

macrumors newbie
Oct 18, 2007
22
1
White Plains, NY
It's natural - if I am in Brooklyn and hungry, I am not going to want to see an ad for a Pizza shop in L.A.. Similarly, if I am the pizza shop in L.A., I don't want to pay for an ad that is going to target people in NYC, who will not fly to LA even if they want a pizza.

As long as we trust that the data won't be analyzed after the fact specifically to try and identify us as individuals, I am OK with this. I trust Apple not to do this, or to allow it to happen, although such things are already possible using phone logs, etc. This isn't that big of a change in what we already do / know.
 

matticus008

macrumors 68040
Jan 16, 2005
3,330
1
Bay Area, CA
Nothing really new or noteworthy.

The whole point of location-based services is to offer you information about your surroundings, which includes local advertisements. You can turn location services off if you'd prefer not to use them.

It's not like cellular triangulation couldn't already place you within a few meters, with or without your consent. It's the nature of the technology.
 

slembcke

macrumors newbie
Feb 6, 2009
11
0
Minnesota
Funny that people think it's terrible when Flurry records this data, how many trust Apple with it?

Also, I'd like to point out that Flurry, like any other code running on the iPhone, cannot use your location without asking you first. This means that someone at Apple clicked "yes" to allow Flurry to collect data on the pre-released iPads. Funny how Steve got so mad about that one to Flurry and not his own people. It's almost like he wanted to rationalize letting only Apple do this...

At least they are letting you opt out instead of trying to be sneaky about it.
 

Riemann Zeta

macrumors 6502a
Feb 12, 2008
661
0
This could be goddamn scary, if setting "location services" to 'off' doesn't really do what it claims (but I think it does). However, I really am quite sick of the notion that electronic devices should monitor and report every single move you make, in order to "personalize" advertising. How much personalization is really needed? There has to be a point of diminishing returns when it comes to psychological profiling and targeting in advertising; once that point is reached, further psy-ops are likely to disquiet and annoy users. And of course I'm not even going to touch the fact that all local, state and federal law enforcement personnel have unlimited ability to view/record all wireless GPS data at any time (and there's certainly no way of disabling that).
 

matticus008

macrumors 68040
Jan 16, 2005
3,330
1
Bay Area, CA
I trust Apple, they'll only use this info to better the iad experience. Google on the other hand would probably sell it or worse.
They're both doing the exact same thing with the data they collect. Google sells it to advertisers and releases developer APIs and Apple makes it available to their developers and advertisers. Both are equally competent, but not perfect, gatekeepers. Google has far more comprehensive data collection, but that's about the only difference.
 

thisisapromise

macrumors newbie
Jun 20, 2010
22
0
Chicago
Conspiracy theorists UNITE!
I'm not too worried about whether or not companies know where I am; I have nothing to hide, nor do I do anything (too) illegal. :D
Don't get me wrong, I definitely don't support it, I'm just accepting the inevitable, because it's only a matter of time before it's 10x worse than advertising agaencies tracking you. lol
 

mike8717189

macrumors member
Mar 17, 2010
48
0
Canada/USA
and I'm sure there is a lot more to this, things we don't want to know. I'm liking apple less and less each time I read something about steve' and his doings...
 

Flyinsquirrel

macrumors member
Nov 13, 2009
38
0
Minnesota, US
Peoples concerns about privacy are getting weird and irrational. Some seem to think that companies (read google) have people that are spying on you and that if we give them any trust they will be searching our photo albums and facebook cache (no I don't use facebook) for clues on to whether or not I am vegetarian and if liked the roast eggplant dish I had with two other friends in my address book.

People are scarier than any privacy issues I've seen, even recent ones.
 

ruinfx

macrumors 6502a
Feb 20, 2008
894
0
i guess that data center in north carolina is for a little more than itunes live ;)

but seriously, how many people flip out on google and now at apple and then go check their facebook? apple and google i can trust however facebook is another story.
 

maknik

macrumors regular
May 17, 2006
172
53
I would object to my government tracking my every move, or my spouse, or a complete stranger -- and I object to Apple doing so. I have nothing to hide, but that doesn't mean I want a camera in every room, or an ankle bracelet reporting my position, or a phone that keeps tabs on everywhere I go. Part of it is that I don't trust Apple, the government, or anyone else with that degree of information, regardless of how lilly-white their current intentions are. But part of it is less pragmatic: as a matter of principle, I object to being surveilled. If there is no way to opt out of this with my iPhone, I'll have to opt out of the iPhone itself.
 

Yr Blues

macrumors 68020
Jan 14, 2008
2,435
511
Shouldn't advertisers have to pay for the bandwidth if they want to advertise directly to me?

Your free data brought to you by "insert company". :cool:
 

NightStorm

macrumors 68000
Jan 26, 2006
1,859
63
Whitehouse, OH
OMG Apple is going to know when I visit Chipotle, or spend the day at Cedar Point... seriously, who cares if they know where you are (after you explicitly allowed them access to this information)?
 

Riemann Zeta

macrumors 6502a
Feb 12, 2008
661
0
I don't trust Apple, the government, or anyone else with that degree of information, regardless of how lilly-white their current intentions are. But part of it is less pragmatic: as a matter of principle, I object to being surveilled.
Amen. In surrendering the last vestiges of privacy, individuals are giving an extraordinarily large politicorporate entity power...and we all know that power corrupts.
 

Apollo21

macrumors member
Feb 6, 2009
94
0
Pennsylvania, USA
"At Apple we're all about privacy, and that's why we're going to share your home address and everything you buy and everywhere you go with our advertising partners."
 

Mike Reed

macrumors regular
Apr 3, 2010
182
25
Columbus, OH
I'm curious what sort of thinking is behind this, the targeted ad language change, and Steve Jobs' recent discussion about users valuing their privacy. Do they really think for a person concerned with privacy it matters if it's ad mob or Apple doing the snooping?

That being said, seriously - who cares. If I had a GPS chip embedded in my head that tweeted my exact location every time it changed by a mile my life would be absolutely no different than it is now. Aside from the whole technically being a cyborg thing of course. If every advertising agency and every government knew exactly what web sites I went to, what music I listen to, and what video I watch - seriously, what difference could it possibly make? The ads I already have to see might actually be relevant to my interests. That's it. I really don't see how this is such a panic button topic.
 

Willaclark

macrumors newbie
Jun 21, 2010
8
0
It has been widely available information: the fact that AT&T has been connected to the NSA and a AT&T whistle blower has stated that they (NSA) has a floor built in to AT&T headquarters. All information passes through big brother no matter what trivial buttons they have you switch on or off.

Check out this Cnet article and do a few searches. It's all out in the open, and of course a "matter of national security".

http://news.cnet.com/AT38T-sued-over-NSA-spy-program/2100-1028_3-6033501.html
 
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