Can this technology be used to disguise — or make it seem you are somewhere you aren’t? RCP, fortunascorner.com
Another fitness app reveals data that can be used to identify soldiers and spies
Polar’s Flow app exposes sensitive information that can be used to decipher where people live and work.
The news: An investigation by De Correspondent and Bellingcat has shown how data from Polar’s fitness tracking app can be used to reveal the names and home addresses of military and security personnel.
Track changes: By looking at exercise routes shared by Polar users and combining these with data from online searches, investigators identified people working for intelligence agencies in the Netherlands, the US, and other countries, as well as military personnel at bases in regions like the Middle East and Africa.
Untrack changes: Polar has taken its activity-tracking map offline and stresses that the app keeps people’s exercise routes private unless they choose to share them.
Why this matters: Terrorists could use fitness apps’ data to target individuals and spot secret facilities. That risk was highlighted earlier this year by researchers using public mapping data from Strava, another social fitness app.