AccuWeather App Stealing Location Data

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AccuWeather App Stealing Location Data
Short Title AccuWeather App Collecting and Sharing User Data without Consent
Location Global
Date August 2017

Solove Harm Surveillance, Increased Accessibility, Breach of Confidentiality, Secondary Use, Exclusion
Information location, Identifying, Computer Device
Threat Actors AccuWeather App

Individuals
Affected iOS Users of AccuWeather App
High Risk Groups
Tangible Harms

In August 2017 AccuWeather was caught collecting user location data, even when location sharing was off.

Description

In August 2017, the AccuWeather iOS app was found to be collecting user location data even when users had their location turned off (Surveillance) (Exclusion). Even though this feature was removed from the app after online criticism, the app was continuing sharing users location data with advertisers and data monetization firms, such as Reveal Mobile, without users explicit permission (Breach of Confidentiality, Increased Accessibility). The company was also accused of another privacy violation: they were collecting users precise GPS coordinates for local weather alerts, but were sharing it with third parties who used it for ads and data monetizing purposes (Secondary Use).

Laws and Regulations

Sources

https://www.vice.com/en us/article/pke9p9/heres-a-privacy-focused-alternative-to-dark-sky-on-android
https://www.zdnet.com/article/accuweather-caught-sending-geo-location-data-even-when-denied-access/