Chinese government says a feature on iOS 7 is a threat to national security
The Chinese government had accused apple of putting up a particular feature on the iOS 7 and now Apple has recently responded through a post which they have released on their Chinese website. According to the government, the Frequent Locations feature can possibly be a threat to the national security and it even had the potential to leak some state secrets as they put it. The feature basically keeps a track of all the places where the iOS user frequently visits and this requires a combo of GPS, Wi-Fi and triangulation so the geographical coordinates of these places can be determined. The concern on the Chinese government was broadcasted on the China Central Television and Apple would be held responsible in case someone broke into the database and stole the data.
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As an answer to this, Apple responded that the app is mostly used by people who want to know how long it will take them to run a specific set of errands but there is absolutely no tracking of the locations which the user has visited. Apple claims that such information wouldn’t be used to follow the movement of users.
Apple’s post read: "Calculating a phone’s location using just GPS satellite data can take several minutes. iPhone can reduce this time to just a few seconds by using pre-stored WLAN hotspot and cell tower location data in combination with information about which hotspots and cell towers are currently being received by the iPhone. In order to accomplish this goal, Apple maintains a secure crowd-sourced database containing known locations of cell towers and WLAN hotspots that Apple collects from millions of Apple devices. It’s important to point out that during this collection process, an Apple device does not transmit any data that is uniquely associated with the device or the customer."