Who knows where you are and what you’re thinking right now? Your phone company. If you carry a smartphone, or even a not-so-smart phone, your mobile phone carrier knows more about your whereabouts over the past few months than you’ll ever be able to remember. Comforting, isn’t it?
A German politician and privacy advocate requested his own information from his carrier, Deutsche Telekom, and was surprised at the results.
In a six-month period — from Aug 31, 2009, to Feb. 28, 2010, Deutsche Telekom had recorded and saved his longitude and latitude coordinates more than 35,000 times. It traced him from a train on the way to Erlangen at the start through to that last night, when he was home in Berlin.
So he did the only logical thing one could with this information: published all six months’ worth on the Internet.
How much information about us do our carriers hold on to here in the US? Carriers don’t have to tell us, but have been known to share that ifnromation with law enforcement.