Catholic Publication Used Location Data Against a Priest

Catholic media publication The Pillar used location data from gay dating app Grindr to track the movements of a priest, then publicly outed him for “improper behavior.”

It wasn’t clear who had collected the information about Burrill. USCCB spokespeople declined to answer questions Tuesday about what it knew about the information-gathering and what its leadership feels about it, except to say the USCCB wasn’t involved. They also declined to comment on whether they knew if Burrill’s alleged actions were tracked on a private or church-owned phone.

This is a good example of how our data can be used against us, and not just by advertisers.

Secret Service Purchased ‘Location X’ Product to Track Phones

A Secret Service document reveals the purchase of “Location X” a product that uses location data harvested from apps. The product is from a company called Babel Street. If that name sounds familiar it’s because two employees left the company to form “Anomaly Six” another location tracking company.

“The purpose of this modification is to add 1 licenses [sic] to CLIN 0003 and incorporate the Master Subscription Agreement and Locate X Addendum as attached,” the contract document reads. Motherboard obtained the document through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.

How the ‘Untappd’ Beer App Was Used to Track Military, CIA Movements

Researchers were able to use beer rating app Untappd to track the location history of military and CIA personnel.

Examples of users that can be tracked this way include a U.S. drone pilot, along with a list of both domestic and overseas military bases he has visited, a naval officer, who checked in at the beach next to Guantanamo’s bay detention center as well as several times at the Pentagon, and a senior intelligence officer with over seven thousand check-ins, domestic and abroad. Senior officials at the U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. Air Force are included as well.

Not even the CIA is safe against the data industrial complex.

The Care19 Contact Tracing App Gives Your Location Data to Foursquare

Care19, a contact tracing app used by North and South Dakota, violates its own privacy policy. Notably, the creator of the app, ProudCrowd, made sure that location data from the app is shared with Foursquare, although it claims it’s not used for commercial purposes. It’s a violation of its privacy policy because users are told their location data is private:

This location data is private to you and is stored securely on ProudCrowd, LLC servers. It will not be shared with anyone including government entities or third parties, unless you consent or ProudCrowd is compelled under federal regulations.