The iPhone is tracking us just as much as Android

The iPhone is tracking us just as much as Android

 

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Smartphones from Apple and Google send user data to their companies every four minutes. This happens even when the device is not in use. Trinity College Dublin has conducted research that casts doubt on the privacy of our smartphones.

Professor Doug Leith argues that, contrary to the advertisements, the iPhone does not offer a significant privacy advantage over “bare” Android without third-party shells. Moreover, according to the research, the iPhone and Google Pixel smartphones collect the same data about their owner. For example, both of them send information to their companies about the Wi-Fi networks to which the user connects, as well as about the MAC addresses of devices adjacent to him – this means that theoretically, both Apple and Google can reliably track in which place and next to what people we are at the moment. And the temptation to use information for your own purposes is the higher, the more accessible it is for the company. With Apple and Google, all data is as accessible as possible.

But the professor considers several facts to be the most curious. First, both the iPhone and the Pixel send data to their companies’ servers about once every 4 and a half minutes. Secondly, information is collected and uploaded, regardless of whether the smartphone is active or in standby mode. Thirdly, the size of this package still differs: the iPhone sends an average of 53 kilobytes, while the Pixel – about 1000 kilobytes (1MB).

“Most would agree that companies need a stream of our information to run some services, like iCloud or Google Drive,” says Doug Leith. “But it’s much harder to accept such a massive collection for people who don’t turn on cloud services at all, but use their own device. like a regular phone – for example, for making calls and taking pictures. ” The professor notes that it is extremely unpleasant to see how Apple, talking from the stage about the privacy of the iPhone, in fact collects so much data and does it so often. Most of all, he is saddened by the fact that the user cannot refuse surveillance or turn off all this flow of his information, which non-stop leaving his smartphone in an unknown direction.