Google stopped `` a service that provides carrier communication speed data for Android smartphones '', because of privacy concerns
With the development of the Internet, the influence of giant technology companies that provide platforms such as SNS is expanding. However, in recent years, the problems related to the protection of user data held by such technology companies have become a frequent topic, and it is regarded as a technology company's responsibility to protect user privacy. With this trend accelerating, Google was reported to have stopped the service of providing “carrier communication speed data according to the location of Android smartphones” to wireless communication carriers such as mobile phone operators.
Exclusive: Fearing data privacy issues, Google cuts some Android phone data for wireless carriers-Reuters
Since March 2017, Google has been developing a service called “Mobile Network Insights” for telecommunications carriers around the world, and provided data on carrier communication speed and signal strength in each area as a map. This service is provided free of charge, and the data collected from Android, which is installed in 75% of smartphones around the world, was extremely valuable for communication carriers.
If you look at Mobile Network Insights, you can find out how much coverage your carrier communication covers and where the communication speed has slowed down. Mobile Network Insights data was helpful in helping carriers make decisions about expanding coverage.
The data that Google provided to carriers was collected by Google from users who allowed sharing of data such as location information and communication speed. However, it seems that the data was aggregated and provided to communication carriers in a state where individual Android devices could not be identified.
Four people familiar with Mobile Network Insights told Reuters that Google stopped the service in April 2019 due to data privacy concerns. Google spokesperson Victoria Keough also acknowledged the Mobile Network Insights service outage.
But Keough didn't talk about the details of the outage, he told Reuters that the reason for the outage was the change in product priorities. “We worked on a mobile partner to improve communication quality through aggregated and anonymized performance metrics.” “We continue to improve the network performance of our apps and services for our users. “Keough commented.
Reuters points out that Google ’s decision to stop Mobile Network Insights is the latest case of abandoning data sharing services, rather than taking the risk that giant technology companies will be accused of privacy concerns. In the EU, the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has been introduced since 2018, prohibiting companies from sharing user data in the absence of user consent or lack of legitimate business reasons.
The momentum of privacy protection in the United States and Europe increased with Facebook's use of large amounts of user data by consulting companies . Legislators and private organizations are paying attention to data sharing among technology companies, and Facebook, Google, and major mobile phone operators are reducing data sharing with external companies.
As Reuters is increasingly concerned about data privacy, Internet companies are trying to improve their tightrope systems to improve profitability and service by sharing user data with other companies. Says.
Mushil Mustafa, former employee of Dubai-based telecommunications carrier du , said about Mobile Network Insights: “This was the source from the most reliable source, so nothing more useful than Mobile Network Insights. 'Comment. However, telecommunications carriers are already looking to other data sharing services.
For example, Facebook has a service similar to Mobile Network Insights called Actionable Insights. The data provided by Actionable Insights also includes information about the user's gender, age, and other characteristics collected from the app. “We carefully designed the Actionable Insights program to protect people's privacy,” said Facebook spokesman Joe Osborne.
by MOHI SYED