iPhone Users Beware of Tracking
>By Christopher Weaver
We all want to feel safe using our smart phones and connected devices, but what if you found out your phone was spying on you? Well that is up for debate in regards to a newly discovered file on the iPhone and iPad, consolidated.db, which apparently has been tracking and storing geo-location data on the device and computer it is synced to. That might not be such a bad thing except for Apple has never asked for permission or informed you fully that this process is occurring. In the terms of service it does say that geo-location data can and will be collected/used to offer services and functionality to the users, but nothing to explain the details of this file. It does not appear to be sending data back to Apple headquarters, but this might put a user at risk or at the very least make them very weary. The kicker is that the data is not even encrypted, so if someone with a bit of knowledge were to gain access to your device/computer they would be able to map out your travels over the past year or more.
You may be thinking to yourself that this is no big deal, or how could this possibly effect me? Besides being a terrible business practice by Apple to not inform you, the Michigan police are some of the first to use cell phone reader devices. They attach their device to a phone without a warrant at a mandatory checkpoint, and download all the data off of your phone to see what you’ve been up to. This may not be happening anywhere near where you live, however if it happens there, no reason it can’t catch on in other parts of the country/world. Imagine all the personal information that you wouldn’t want anyone else to have. What’s the solution? The backup that gets synced to your home computer can be encrypted, but the file on the phone seems to be unable. So now you know, and yet you can’t fully protect yourself to this potentially dangerous file. Below is a picture showing the information stored by this file plotted on a map.