Apple has told software developers to stop using Unique Device Identifier (UDID) in the upcoming iOS 5, according to “The Wall Street Journal” (http://macte.ch/uCZCN). It’s a feature of its mobile software that can be used to track user behavior and gather their personal data.
Because the UDID is unique to each iPhone and iPad, it can provide a means for third-party advertisers looking for a way to track a mobile device users’ online activities. Because the UDID is not alterable or deletable by a iPhone or iPad user, some have referred to the UDID as a “supercookie.”
Such tracking has caused concerns among privacy advocates because it could give personal information about users without their knowledge. On the other hand, the change removes a way for makers of apps, advertising networks, social game networks and analytics firms to easily offer their services, notes “The Journal.”
Apple hasn’t set a deadline for the change though iOS 5 is due sometime this fall. However, the company says on its developers’ website that the feature “has been superseded and may become unsupported in the future.” Apple does say developers could still create an identifier unique to each individual application, says the “Journal.”
— Dennis Sellers