South Korea and France Investigate Apple’s Locationgate
Locationgate looked like it had come to an end with the release of iOS 4.3.3, but it may have been too late. The Korea Communications Commission set a precedent on Wednesday by fining Apple 3 million won ($2,830) for ignoring their location information laws.
It was discovered in April that iPhones were storing up to one-year of location data files. Apple claimed that the information was being used to track Wi-Fi hotspots and cell phone tower locations, but some people didn’t like the idea that their iPhone was tracking them.
The South Korea communications regulator agreed, and after a four-month investigation decided that Apple was to blame. The KCC said Apple collected users’ info, even after they disabled the location systems in their devices, from June 22, 2010, through May 4, 2011.
Now France has started their own investigation.
“We have sent two letters to Apple, who have responded to us in part. We received some clarifications, but they were not complete. The file is still under investigation," Yann Padova, head of CNIL, told AFP. “The group is still trying to figure out how Apple encrypts the location data it apparently collects.”
iOS 4.3.3 limited the data storage to seven days, and iOS 5 will encrypt the data on iPhones in the future, but Apple still claims they did nothing wrong.
Apple spokesman Steve Park wrote in a statement that the company was not tracking people:
“Apple is not tracking the location of your iPhone,” Park said after the decision. “Apple has never done so and has no plans to ever do so.”