You are here

One nation, tracked: 12m phones, one dataset, zero privacy

Your life is an open book to dozens of firms quietly collecting precise movements using software slipped onto mobile phone apps

BT_20191221_NYTRACKED_3983773.jpg
People using their mobile phones during Z100's iHeartRadio Jingle Ball 2019 at Madison Square Garden in New York on Dec 13. In the decade since Apple's App Store was created, tens of millions of Americans, including many children, find themselves carrying spies in their pockets during the day and leaving them beside their beds at night. No federal law in the US, as in most of the world, limits what has become a vast and lucrative trade in human tracking.

EVERY minute of every day, everywhere on the planet, dozens of companies - largely unregulated, little scrutinised - are logging the movements of tens of millions of people with mobile phones and storing the information in gigantic data files.

The Times Privacy Project obtained one such...