LinkNYC Kiosks in New York

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LinkNYC Kiosks in New York
Short Title LinkNYC Kiosks Can Track New Yorkers
Location New York, New York
Date 2019

Solove Harm Surveillance, Aggregation
Information Location, Computer Device, Behavioral
Threat Actors Google, CityBridge

Affected New Yorkers
High Risk Groups
Tangible Harms

The LinkNYC kiosks, that are installed all over New York City are tracking individuals.


LinkNYC kiosks are installed all over New York City and provide public Wi-Fi, free domestic phone calls, and USB charging ports.

They are outfitted with sensors and cameras that track the movements of everyone in their vicinity. Once a person connects, the network will record their location every time they come within 150 feet of a kiosk.Surveillance

The kiosks are owned and operated by CityBridge (a consortium of companies that includes investment and leadership from Sidewalk Labs — a subsidiary of Alphabet, the parent company of Google).

Although CityBridge calls this information “anonymized” because it doesn’t include one's name or email address — the system instead records a unique identifier for each device that connects — when millions of these data points are collected and analyzed, such data can be used to track people’s movements and infer intimate details of their lives. This is an example of Aggregation.

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