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Nov 15 2011

Google Location system: What ever happened to “Do No Evil?”

Published by at 9:34 am under Openness

I just noticed last week that Google Maps knew the location of my laptop computer, even though I had never told it where I was.  After a bit of sleuthing, it turns out that Google probably got this information when a someone with an Android phone visited.  The phone sniffed my WiFi ports, read the GPS location, and reported this back to Google location services.

They did this without my knowledge, and without my permission.

Now, it turns out that if I want to “opt-out” of this procedure, I would have change my security system rename my WiFi access points and devices.

In technobabble doublespeak, Google is telling us that it gives us “greater choice”

“As we explored different approaches for opting-out access points from the Google Location Server, we found that a method based on wireless network names provides the right balance of simplicity as well as protection against abuse. Specifically, this approach helps protect against others opting out your access point without your permission.”

This is an absurdity.  Google should not be invading my home with visitor’s smart phones to capture my private information, period.

It seems that Google has turned to the dark side.  What ever happened to “Do No Evil?”

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