June 20, 2019

Digital Privacy: “Google’s Sensorvault is a Boon for Law Enforcement. This Is How It Works”

From The NY Times:

Law enforcement officials across the country have been seeking information from a Google database called Sensorvault — a trove of detailed location records involving at least hundreds of millions of devices worldwide, The New York Times found.

The Sensorvault database is connected to a Google service called Location History. The feature, begun in 2009, involves Android and Apple devices. Location History is not on by default. Google prompts users to enable it when they are setting up certain services — traffic alerts in Google Maps, for example, or group images tied to location in Google Photos.

If you have Location History turned on, Google will collect your data as long as you are signed in to your account and have location-enabled Google apps on your phone. The company can collect the data even when you are not using your apps, if your phone settings allow that.

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Gary Price About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.

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