Your iPhone Web Browser Reports Your Physical Location. But Who Are They Telling?

Privacy Issues

Firefox 3.5 and Safari on the iPhone can now report your physical location. Such functionality, available in the newest Firefox and in Safari on the iPhone, opens the door to some serious privacy concerns.

Firefox 3.5 works in conjunction with the Google Location Service. If you visit a site that can use your location, a pop-up bar at the top of the page asks you to allow or block the request. If you allow it Firefox sends your IP address and data about nearby wireless access points to Google.

Safari‘s location service prompts you when you visit, via iPhone, a site that can use your location based on GPS, local Wi-Fi networks, or cellular network data. Unlike Firefox, Safari on the iPhone gives you no option to have it remember your decision; the program automatically saves your choice for 24 hours, then resets.

Who are they telling?

The matter of concern is that neither browser provides info on what the site wants to do with your data. Before you share anything, the permission pop-up should tell you whether the data is necessary to map you, find nearby restaurants, or perhaps display location-based ads. But neither browser offers such an explanation.

How to protect your privacy on iPhone?

If you are concerned about your privacy while browsing on your iPhone you should consider using a VPN app. For example, 123VPN is a light VPN solution that works smoothly on iPhone and it’s FREE!

What do you think about the possibility that your physical location is revealed by your phone? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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1 comment… add one
  • daniel Aug 27, 2009

    This is my concern too. Where is this data reported?
    So, I never allow my browser to report my location.

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