Geolocation privacy

Posted On 10 Jan 2014
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Smart mobile devices have the capacity to tell us where we are by using GPS, but at the same time, they can tell others what our location is. In some cases, when we want to make this information available, being able to unveil our location is a good thing. But ideally we should be able to switch the option on and off to avoid potentially putting ourselves at risk. SinglesAroundMe, a popular social discovery mobile dating app has developed the patent pending Position-Shift. Position-Shift allows people to shift their public geolocation for the sake of their mobile privacy and security while on a smart-phone or social network. It allows mobile users to choose who knows where they are and when, giving them full control of their desired privacy. It can also work across other social networks. Anyone using Facebook, for instance, could use Position-Shift in the future to allow users to choose which friends and family members they would allow to see their exact location. Others could see their location displaced by selectable setting of 1 mile, 2 miles, or 10 miles from their real location on maps or by digital distance calculations. Users can customise levels of location privacy for different individuals, groups of friends, work colleagues, social networks, family, etc. The algorithm used on this app introduces a degree of displacement in the user’s location with user-defined control. SinglesAroundMe CEO Christopher Klotz says,” We came to realise that our invention has broad appeal across all social networks and where location is a privacy issue for people in their everyday lives. People in all walks of life desire the ability to control who knows where they are and we just discovered a clever way to control this in the digital world.” Similarly, posting a photo to a social network or a photo service like Instagram and having the option to utilise Position-Shift to alter the location of where the photo is taken is an important privacy option. For example users may wish to post a picture, but would prefer to alter the geo-tag location of exactly where the photo is taken from so third parties can’t locate their real location at that point in time, just as they have offset their GPS location.

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.