Apple Starting To Reject Apps That Use Cookies To Track Users



Apple has been historically fickle about how it lets marketers and developers track iOS users through apps downloaded from the App Store. After all of the privacy concerns were raised about the UDID device identifier back in 2011, a better solution never presented itself.

Apple eventually introduced its own Advertising Identifier for iOS device tracking purposes, but marketers still favored the unique, permanent nature of the UDID. The UDID worked so well because it was a device-specific identifier that could never be changed. Athough developers were technically banned from using the UDID to track iOS devices more than a year ago, many, many apps still use the deprecated method today.

Apple is reportedly starting to reject apps that use web cookies to track user activity in iOS. Could this mean a reinvigorated push towards the Advertising Identifier again?

iPhone Tracking Is All A Big Mistake, Says Researcher



The iPhone tracking issue that’s causing a big privacy stink isn’t new and isn’t really tracking users, says an iOS forensics researcher.

It’s actually a data file that is used internally by the iPhone to do things like geo-tag photos, and it’s been in iOS for a long time (in a different form).

What’s new is a nifty extraction tool called iPhoneTracker that pulls the data off your hard drive and makes a striking map out of it. iPhoneTracker was released this week at O’Reilly’s Where 2.0 conference, causing a huge outcry about privacy and prompting U.S. Senator Al Franken to write to Steve Jobs.

In addition, the file has become more accessible than it used to be because it’s now used by third-party apps that require location data.

“It is not secret, malicious, or hidden,” writes Alex Levinson, an iOS forensics researcher.