M$ Lies About Localizing Users

M$ has been sued for spying on people. M$ claimed it did not seek position without asking permission. A few tests show Phoney “7” phones home to share information without asking permission

Why am I not surprised? Oh, yes, M$ frequently stretches the truth whenever it benefits the bottom line or harms competition.

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
This entry was posted in technology. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to M$ Lies About Localizing Users

  1. oiaohm says:

    Contrarian please read more carefully what it doing.

    Its sending a few packets back to particular MS servers to get a gps resolve for the wireless access points and to phone.

    Exactly why did the phone have to send this much information.

    OS Version (7.0.7004.WM7_7.0_Ship(mojobld).20100916-1429)
    Device Information (SAMSUNG/SGH-i917 and SAMSUNG Electronics/SAMSUNG MITs/i917UCJJ1/[digits])
    Wireless access points around me (MAC addresses, power levels)
    Various GUID-based identifiers”

    Ok why? Ok I understand requesting the wireless access point geoip location. Sending the phone exact ID not funny.

    Really it a case of too much sent server side. The phone should be doing generic requests to solve stuff.

    Mind you if someone nicked my WP7 phone and I need to track it and I had unlimited powers I think I would be getting my hands on those websites.

    The resolve information it sends does in fact server side give exact location of phone and what phone it is.

  2. Contrarian says:

    “M$ claimed it did not seek position without asking permission”

    Well, I’ll bite. 🙂

    The complaint states that the camera app presents the following:

    “Allow the camera to use your location?”

    “Sharing this information will add a location tag to your pictures so you can see where your pictures were taken. This information also helps us provide you with improved location services. We won’t use the information to identify or contact you.”

    Allow and Cancel buttons are displayed at the bottom of the popup.

    The phone is apparently set to track its location if the phone is configured by the user to activate the location feature. Prior to the user’s selection of Allow/Cancel, the location is determined by querying a web service that can triangulate the phone’s position.

    So now, what are the issues? Presumably if you click cancel, the location data is not tagged to the pictures and the suit does not claim that it to occur. Rather, the suit suggests that the location data is being collected by Microsoft in violation of some named acts regarding electronic privacy, state and federal.

    That has to be determined in court, I think. All that has been discovered and disclosed is a mechanism for determining the phone’s location. There is no evidence or other offer of proof that the location data is actually being collected or used in any way in violation of the law or user intent.

    I don’t think that the existence of the capability is all that important. Surely any such phone has the ability to do that, even regular cell phones. I remember the Casey Anthony trial evidence in Orlando a couple of months ago where the police were able to track her movements based on cell phone records kept by the phone company apparently for an indefinite period of time.

  3. Yep. It’s like flies and honey.

  4. Kolter says:

    queue the microsoft apologists in 3… 2… 1…

Leave a Reply