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S. Korea probes Apple's location data collection

All Headlines 15:50 April 25, 2011

SEOUL, April 25 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's telecom regulator said Monday that it launched a probe into Apple Inc. to decide whether the U.S. tech giant's collection of location data from its iPhone and iPad users in South Korea violates piracy rules.

The Korea Communications Commission said it has sent a list of inquiries to Apple Korea asking the local unit to clarify why location data are collected from mobile device users in the country, how frequently such data are recorded, why such information is not encrypted, and whether device users have a choice over data deletion or data storage.

Apple is also required to explain whether such data are stored on its servers, the regulator said.

Apple has come under fire for tracing and storing geographical data from its mobile device users in many countries such as France and Germany, as researchers announced at a technology conference in California last week that the iPhone has been collecting users' location information and storing the data for extended periods of time.

They said that location data-related files are unencrypted and unprotected and can be transferred to any machine synced with the device.

KT Corp., the second-biggest mobile carrier and No. 1 fixed-line operator in the country, has sold more than 2 million iPhones since November 2009.

sam@yna.co.kr
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