A Canadian software developer has created a program that allows iPhone and iPad users to wipe clean the location history of their devices after security researchers unleashed a privacy uproar by revealing that Apple records the location details in a hidden file on the user’s phone and copies the unencrypted data to the user’s home computer, reports the “Ottawa Citizen” (http://macte.ch/1aEjF).
According to the article, Ryan Petrich of Edmonton says he’s being bombarded with emails and online messages about his new tool called “Untrackerd” (http://macte.ch/VQXWV). When installed, the program deletes the location tracking information, held in a hidden file called consolidated.db, every 30 minutes.
The iPhone developer launched the free program after news broke that the new iPhones have been keeping track of where a user goes in a secret file, using information gleaned from nearby cellphone towers and Wi-Fi networks. Locations and time stamps are then copied to the owner’s computer if the two are synchronized.
Meanwhile, a German privacy watchdog is demanding answers from Apple over whether its iPhones and iPads are secretly collecting data on users’ locations, notes the “Detroit Free Press” (http://macte.ch/ovWBi). Thomas Kranig, head of the data protection authority for the state of Bavaria, where Apple has its German headquarters, said in an interview published in today’s Sueddeutsche Zeitung that the company has until May 10 to respond.