Thursday, June 02, 2022

Tim Hortons violated privacy laws - wait, don't all apps do that?

Tim Hortons has just been hauled over the coals for violating privacy laws with its app, which apparently gathers location data hundred of times a day, even when the app is not in use. It was ruled that the apps permissions "misled many users", and led to "a loss of users' privacy that was not proportional to the potential benefits Tim Hortons may have hoped to gain".

But hold on, don't pretty much all apps do that? Isn't that just what apps do? A New York Times Wirecutter analysis, for example, found that 60% of the 250 apps tested had a Data Used to Track You label, and of those 96% used identifiers, 70% measure advertising data, 38% used location identifiers, and 19% used context info. The worst offenders were weather apps that use location to track devices, shopping apps, fitness apps, house- and apartment-hunting apps, news apps and dating apps.

If you are worried about this kind of thing, you can turn off your Location Services. But Tim's is really no more nefarious than hundred of other apps.

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