WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Edward Markey (D-Mass.) released the following statement today after Apple posted a Q&A on the company’s website responding to recent media reports about iPhones and iPads collecting personal user location information. Rep. Markey, a senior member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee and co-Chairman of the House Bi-Partisan Privacy Caucus, last week sent a letter to Apple CEO Steve Jobs querying him about Apple’s data collection, storage and disclosure practices. Rep. Markey’s letter followed news reports that Apple’s iOS 4 operating system was collecting customers’ location data, storing it on the user's iPhone and iPad for months, and backing it up when synched with another device, leaving it unprotected.
“I am pleased that Apple will address several of the concerns I raised in my letter regarding the collection of personal user location information on iPhones and iPads, including the back-up of location information that occurs when iPhones are synched with other devices and the update of users’ locations even when users turn off location services on their iPhones.
“However, the Apple Q&A raises questions about the use of location information for targeted advertising to iPhone users, and I will be following up with the company to get clarification on this issue. Location information is extremely sensitive and must be safeguarded.”
“By providing these additional consumer controls, using an Apple everyday should help keep the predators away. I look forward to Apple’s full response to my letter.”