US Agencies Using Location data



In previous post Surveilling Ourselves, The New York Time’s ground breaking privacy project One Nation tracked was highlighted. In the Time’s report it was demonstrated that how small tech location companies are surveilling citizens without their permission.

The Wall Street Journal recently reported that ‘Federal Agencies Use Cellphone Location Data for Immigration Enforcement’ with commercial database that maps movements of millions of cellphones. According to the Times report, ‘the data used by the government comes not from the phone companies but from a location data company, one of many that are quietly and relentlessly collecting the precise movements of all smartphone-owning Americans through their phone apps’. The WSJ reports the US agencies are using location data collected from gaming, weather and shopping apps for immigration and border enforcement.

When the government tracks the location of a cellphone it achieves near perfect surveillance, as if it had attached an ankle monitor to the phone’s user. We decline to grant the state unrestricted access to a wireless carrier’s database of physical location information.

Chief Justice Roberts, US Supreme Court cited from The Times Editorial

The WSJ ground breaking report generated media buzz with headlines in major print & online media, a few randomly selected are listed below.

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