We are more than half of the French to be equipped with a smartphone and we have on average 90 applications, including 40 that we use at least once a month.
More and more applications use geolocation: Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Tinder … All offer their users to share their position. What are the limits and how to protect your privacy? What are the dangers of these geolocation services?
Geolocation is basically appeared via the so-called “map” applications, with the aim of locating and orienting us. Then some saw there a function of sharing serving for example to accompany a post on Facebook or to tag a photo on Instagram. Until then rather trivial geolocation has become commonplace and now it has a number of applications ranging from the game application to the dating application.
She accompanies today every picture taken with your phone or even your camera. Indeed, all connected objects embark a system of GPS or triangulation by Wifi to add geolocation data to the content they help to produce and broadcast.
The Alphonso software
Earlier this year, a software named Alphonso hit the headlines. This software installed in some applications allows you to activate your microphone and listen to you. Put on the front of the stage by the New York Time, applications like Pool 3D, Beer Pong: Trickshot, Real Bowling Strike 10 Pin or Honey Quest would use Alphonso.
The company has ensured that users are aware of its operation through the descriptions that accompany the applications and that each user has to agree that the software is access to the microphone.
The Snapchat case
The famous social network of 18-24 year olds launched last summer the feature of geolocation ultra precise: Snap Map. This option allows users to locate their friend by the meter and is enabled by default for each user. This is the parameter that worries many parents and child welfare associations. In addition to this problem, this feature raises an even more sensitive topic that the recovery of personal data including the sending of targeted advertising and monetization.
When we take a picture with our smartphone or with our digital camera data is linked to the file as metadata: date of shooting, dimension, file name, exposure … but also the place. These data are called EXIF or Exchangeable Image File Format. Share on the internet or on social networks, these photos can say a lot about you.
As you can see, geolocation is a very useful revolution when it allows us to orient ourselves, but it must be mastered and it requires some settings.