U.S. Congressmen Markey and Barton question Apple CEO Steve Jobs over location data collection

Invisible Shield for Apple iPhone 4!“Congressmen Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) and Joe Barton (R-Texas) June 24 sent a letter to Apple CEO Steve Jobs about provisions in the company’s privacy policy that allow it to collect data about the location of devices consumers purchase. Apple will not let users download any applications from the iTunes store without agreeing to the new terms and conditions,” Clint Boulton reports for eWeek. “The lawmakers want to understand Apple’s data collection practices and their potential impact on consumers.”

Apple’s revised privacy policy states: “To provide location-based services on Apple products, Apple and our partners and licensees may collect, use, and share precise location data, including the real-time geographic location of your Apple computer or device. This location data is collected anonymously in a form that does not personally identify you and is used by Apple and our partners and licensees to provide and improve location-based products and services.”

Boulton reports, “This has Reps. Markey and Barton, who co-chair the House Bi-Partisan Privacy Caucus, concerned. ‘Given the limited ability of Apple users to opt out of the revised policy and still be able to take advantage of the features of their Apple products, we are concerned about the impact the collection of such data could have on the privacy of Apple’s customers,’ the Congressmen wrote in the letter.”

Boulton reports, “The lawmakers want to better understand Apple’s data collection practices and their potential impact on consumers, as well as public policy implications of the data usage.”

Full article, including Markey’s and Barton’s questions, for which they demand answers from Apple by July 12, here.

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