TomTom has apologized for selling user data from personal navigation devices to police.
It wasn't exactly a surprise. When Netherlands-based TomTom reported weak first quarter earnings earlier this year, it said it would try to supplement earnings through certain methods like selling traffic data to governments.
But when Dutch newspaper Algemeen Dagblad revealed that the information was obtained by Dutch police, who used it set targeted speed traps, people got upset.
But TomTom CEO Harold Goddijn said the company only had the best of intentions, because the company believes it "can help make roads safer and less congested."
Microsoft has confirmed that Windows Phones don't store location history in a manner similar to the iPhone, which records the location data in an unencrypted file. The news that some iOS devices keep location data came to light last week, although
Microsoft told us unequivocally that phones running Windows Phone 7 do not store location history. Like most other phones, the platform offers plenty of location-based apps, and those apps require user consent before they begin tracking. Windows Phones also offer the common feature of a "global switch" that lets the user disable all location services, and Microsoft says its "Find My Phone" service keeps only the phone's most recent location.
We also contacted Nokia, RIM, Google, and HP about how the companies' mobile platforms store location data, and none, save Microsoft, have responded. It's been confirmed independently that Google Android also tracks and stores location data.
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