Every Step You Take, They’ll Be Tracking You

Malte Spitz, a member of the Green Party in Germany, sued Deutsche Telekom and forced the company to hand over six months of recorded cell phone data. The results were fairly eye opening.

During a five month period, DT tracked Spitz’s location and phone usage 35,000 times. If that sounds like a lot, you’re right. And it looks even worse when you visualize the data. Zeit Online took this geolocation data and combined it with publicly-available information relating to Spitz’s political life (e.g., his Twitter feeds and blog entries) and produced a screencast that documents two days in the life of the Green Party politician. The YouTube video above traces his steps. But the visuals on the Zeit site let you track Spitz’s movements around Germany with finer precision. The moral of the story: Every step you take, your telco is likely tracking you, whether you give consent or not. The New York Times has more on the story

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