Location, location, location – smartphone users concerned about their privacy

Smartphone applications like Gowalla and FourSquare are signing in millions of people daily,  but they can pinpoint your exact location using your phone's GPS chip, if allowed. A study by the security firm Webroots revealed that 55% of location-based services users are worried about the privacy implications of using them. Revealing your whereabouts on the Internet can run you into all sorts of problems, not only of the “honey-I-was-working-late” type, when you clearly posted pictures from the pub.

Someone who has sneaked into your circle of virtual friends somehow, might know the exact location of your house from the geotagged photos, and get to business while you are posting vacation pictures, says a Webroots employee. What is even more troubling is that sometimes people befriend complete strangers online, or use location-based services to meet them.

Turning off all applications that monitor your whereabouts, on the other hand, might require some fiddling, especially if you have checked something in a hurry while installing an app, or while setting up your phone for first use. Webroots thinks it will take at least a year for people to learn how to manage their location-based apps, the way it took a year for Facebook users to realize its privacy implications.

source: Guardian via Textually

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