It was not long ago that Apple was in trouble for “tracking users locations”. It was claimed that iPhones logged and stored their locations and this information could be used to see where the user was or had been. In reality, the phone stored the locations of cell towers so it could connect quickly the next time, much like a browser caching images to save time. The issue was that this info was stored unencrypted and could be accessed quite easily. Apple has since fixed the issue by encrypting the data and also reducing the amount of time it is stored for.
Now Microsoft is in trouble for the same thing. It is claimed that its Windows 7 Phones operating system collects data from mobile phone users without their knowledge. Data, such as locations, is collected by various phone running the operating system when the phone’s camera is turned on, even if the users have set this data not to be recorded. It has been tested and verified on HTC and Samsung handsets running Microsofts latest mobile operating system.
Microsoft has remained silent on the lawsuit and is yet to say what they plan to do about it. We suspect they will stop the data being stored, but as they do not manufacture the phones which run their operating system it may take some time for the update, if there is one, to be available on all handsets.
We will be keeping a close eye on this as we believe users should not be tracked without their knowledge or consent.