CNET: Chinese facial recognition company left database of people’s locations exposed. “A Chinese facial recognition company left its database exposed online, revealing information about millions of people, a security researcher discovered. SenseNets, a company based in Shenzhen, China, offers facial recognition technology and crowd analysis, which the company boasted in a promotional video could track people across cities and pick them out in large groups.”
Motherboard: Hundreds of Bounty Hunters Had Access to AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint Customer Location Data for Years. “Around 250 bounty hunters and related businesses had access to AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint customer location data, with one bail bond firm using the phone location service more than 18,000 times, and others using it thousands or tens of thousands of times, according to internal documents obtained by Motherboard from a company called CerCareOne, a now-defunct location data seller that operated until 2017. The documents list not only the companies that had access to the data, but specific phone numbers that were pinged by those companies.”
Make Tech Easier: How to Visualize Your Google Location History. “Personal data is a big deal in the modern world: companies collect it, cybercriminals steal it, governments demand it, and the general public probably underestimates it. Tools like Location History Visualizer help with that last bit, though, taking your raw personal location data from Google and converting it into a beautiful, creepy heatmap of everywhere Google knows you’ve been.”
The Register: AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, T-Mobile US pledge, again, to not sell your location to shady geezers. Sorry, we don’t believe them. “US cellphone networks have promised – again – that they will stop selling records of their subscribers’ whereabouts to anyone willing to cough up cash.” I don’t believe them either.
Wired: Your Old Tweets Give Away More Location Data Than You Think. “An international group of researchers has developed an algorithmic tool that uses Twitter to automatically predict exactly where you live in a matter of minutes, with more than 90 percent accuracy. It can also predict where you work, where you pray, and other information you might rather keep private, like, say, whether you’ve frequented a certain strip club or gone to rehab.”
Motherboard: I Gave a Bounty Hunter $300. Then He Located Our Phone. “T-Mobile, Sprint, and AT&T are selling access to their customers’ location data, and that data is ending up in the hands of bounty hunters and others not authorized to possess it, letting them track most phones in the country.”
Medium: Facebook’s Illusion of Control over Location-Related Ad Targeting. “Facebook’s advertising principles and statements from the VP of ads, Rob Goldman, emphasize that its Ads Preferences tool allows users to ‘control how your data informs your ad experience.’ However, Irfan Faizullabhoy and I have observed that when it comes to one of the most privacy-sensitive types of data, location, Facebook does not provide meaningful controls and is misleading in its statements to users and advertisers.”