Archive for January 26th, 2011

Friday is Data Privacy Day, don’t ask me who made it so I just know it is. Anyway as such Microsoft has put up a nice PDF on using location based services safely and being aware of how these services work.

If your not up on this new trend you may be using Location Based Services without even knowing it. If your using one of these nice new smartphones with built-in GPS are you aware your images may be tagged with the GPS location of the photo. Imagine those pictures of your kids playing in the backyard and you posted those images to Flickr or other sites and in doing so you just posted your home’s location down to the foot. Even with Geo Tagging (the tagging of GPS data to an image) turned off your phone still places a ton of information in the photo such as the phone model, date, time and more, all of which could pass more information than you thought.

Of course other services such as FourSquare are all about posting your current location to the web, I hope I don’t have to say how dangerous this could be. The objective was to allow for meet-ups with your friends or like minded folks that might be in your general area which in the early days worked pretty well but now with millions using the service can you see the downside? I will give you an example of a post I saw a few weeks back:

Just arrived in Winston-Salem, bored and alone. Thank goodness the Hilton has a whirlpool, going down for a good long soak.

I think it’s pretty obvious just how stupid that post was especially since her profile also includes a picture. Unfortunately many people are just to trusting and just don’t give a post like that second thoughts until it’s to late.

So anyway check out the attached PDF put together by Microsoft on this subject.

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