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Re: Opt-out for wifi network of the Google Location Server

From: Karl Dubost <karld@opera.com>
Date: Fri, 25 Nov 2011 13:20:59 -0500
Message-Id: <CDD1369D-7272-4544-BFF6-4E10BDBC326A@opera.com>
Cc: <public-privacy@w3.org>
To: "<Frank.Wagner@telekom.de>" <Frank.Wagner@telekom.de>

Le 25 nov. 2011 à 09:31, <Frank.Wagner@telekom.de> <Frank.Wagner@telekom.de> a écrit :
> We had this in Germany around all the discussions about streetview. They told that the collection of the SSID was a software bug. I wonder that the bug has not been fixed in other countries....

Not exactly. There are two things.

1. The association of SSID + MAC address to geolocation
2. The collection of data going through these networks.

The second one is a no-no for obvious reasons.
The first one (which I relate to in my first email) is 
an interesting issue of the internet of things. 

- Devices have ids to communicate
- Some devices are localizable
  - either because they are in a fixed position (WIFI)
  - either because they move in a geolocalized network of cells (Mobile phone)
- Devices are used by humans (carried)

The geolocation gives a lot of services when it goes from human to devices.
The geolocation becomes a very hard privacy issue when it goes from device to humans.

There are "privacy built-in" geolocation systems such as

- a paper map
- streets sign (name of streets, or block reference in Japan)
- GPS 

And system which are very bad such as

- Triangulation of cell towers (because of your user id on that network)
  (not the system could be opaque if phone companies where accepting 
   to provide a signal where the device would compute its location 
   without having a user id. I think it would be a wonderful feature.
   I fear it would not happen.)

Karl Dubost - http://dev.opera.com/
Developer Relations & Tools, Opera Software
Received on Friday, 25 November 2011 18:21:42 UTC

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