Think you’re alone with your phone?

MIT researchers say, don’t kid yourself:

“While urban planners can use the personal data they aggregate to help resolve parking and accessibility issues, a captured set of such data could also be “deanonymized” … “While the MIT group wasn’t trying to unmask specific users in this dataset, they proved that someone acting in bad faith could merge such anonymized datasets with personal ones using the same process, easily pinning the timestamps together to figure out who was who.” More.

Reality check: The data will be sold. Your location can be a useful guide to your buying habits, whether or not you want to buy anything or think anyone has any business snooping on you to find out. Expect Virtual Private Networks to become more popular.

See also: Our anonymity may be an illusion Because we talk about ourselves so much online, few leaked pieces may even be required to identify us.


The $60 billion-dollar medical data market is coming under scrutiny As a patient, you do not own the data and are not as anonymous as you think