As internet company’s realize the revenue power of owning user data we have found ourselves watching as our private information is virtually stolen and used for marketing purposes. While we often hear about Facebook and its complete lack of user privacy respect FB is not the only social program that grabs user data for its own goods.
The team at BackgroundCheck.org pulled various user privacy based data breach histories and created an infographic with that information.
The most recent example comes from LinkedIn when it was recently discovered that a users iCal data was being pulled and stored on LinkedIn servers in unencrypted form along with passwords and notes. While users opted-in for the calendar option LinkedIn never said a users data would be transferred to its servers.
In another case of blatant consumer data theft the mobile-only social network Patch downloaded an iPhone users entire address book to its server. Android users lucked out and had to opt-in to utilize that particular data send.
In a scary case of publicly available information the app “Girls Around Me” as shut down after it used Facebook and Foursquare data to pull the information of women directly in the vicinity of the apps user. While not a direct breach of privacy the app was criticized because of its “stalker-friendly” use. Foursquare eventually pulled the developers API access, thus making the app useless.
If you are worried about the use of privacy stealing apps you can read the last portion of the sneaky apps infographic for information on how to prevent mobile data theft.