Uncovered: Google & Apple, PC’s Secret Data Collectors

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Tech Co’s give the KGB a run for its money with its covert tracking operations.

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First Apple was caught out storing data from mobile devices by two UK scientists. Now it’s spread to computers and Google has also joined in the fun.

Welcome to the world of snow leopards and incognito location intelligence tracking your movements. 

And it’s all done by Apple Macs while accessing Wi Fi networks as users give a website permission to determine the computer’s location and proximity to the networks, through an operating system called ‘snow leopard.’
Google, on the other hand, collects data from Wi Fi connected computers that use its Chrome browser or search toolbar, according to a Google executive, the Wall Street Journal reports. 
Steve Jobs giant, already potentially in hot water over revelations just last week that its iPhone was recording and transmitting users location data to PC devices including iPad and Macs when connected, communicated this latest revelation in a letter to federal lawmakers.
This is following the US Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology and the Law opening an investigation into protecting mobile privacy and invited execs from both companies to attend the hearing to be held next month. 
However, both tech companies insist the info collated is to enhance user experience as location determination will help execute in terms of time and location specific services and other device tools like Google Maps and search. 
They also say the details are anonymous and not linked to any other purpose, despite Google making a million dollar industry out of selling location based advertising. 
Once the location tool is turned on, the search giant gets fed data from the computer toolbar when it scans the area for other wireless networks. 
However, this is only for the purpose of improving the quality of location databases, it insists.

 

The location tracking intelligence appears to be unique to Apple mobile devices, while Google Android and other handsets were in the clear.   

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