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    CNet: Apple advises users how location data can be used

    CNet reports on changes from Apple concerning the privacy of users’ location data.

    Apple updated its privacy policy to underscore that when you use location-based services on your iOS device, Apple will be sharing your location with that service.

    The update, which came on Monday, added this to the company’s overall privacy policy:

    • 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. For example, we may share geographic location with application providers when you opt in to their location services.
    • Some location-based services offered by Apple, such as the MobileMe “Find My iPhone” feature, require your personal information for the feature to work. […]

    Apple has been more vocal lately about privacy when it comes to location, which could have prompted the update to the policy. Earlier this month, CEO Steve Jobs addressed this same topic when he was interviewed at the D: All Things Digital conference. He said Apple wants customers to always have to opt-in when they are sharing their location.

    “We worry a lot about location in phones,” Jobs said. “We have rejected a lot of apps that want to take your personal data and suck it up into the cloud. A lot of people in the Valley think we are really old-fashioned about that, and maybe we are. Privacy means people know what they are signing up for in plain English…Some people want to share more data. Ask them. Ask them every time. Let them know precisely what you are going to do with their data.”

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