You go New York Times, there are a few stories the newspaper has run recently which are worthy of note and worth potentially sending to people who don’t devour tech news for a living. The first is from this past week – an article which exposes a simple security flaw which could haunt you. Simply, by allowing the camera on your cellphone or GPS enabled-gadget to geotag your photos, information stored in the pics will become available to people savvy enough to decipher your photograph’s location.
This is an important point in case if you happen to be very private and sitting at home and decide to photograph something like your cat or a deer running around your backyard. Post that photo on Twitter and suddenly the whole world has access to the address of your home.
On a device like an iPhone an application like the camera tells you it would like to use your location and then awaits your permission. Give that permission and all future photos have a tag which can potentially be used against you. The good side of this technology is it allows you to piece together where shots were taken at a later date as well but if you are posting photos online – or even backing them up online be aware law enforcement agencies and potentially hackers can piece together a nice history of your past whereabouts.
The way to disable this function on an iPhone is not immediately obvious. There is no options setting in the camera app and there is no settings button inside the general settings area for camera. What you need to do is follow settings to general to location settings as you can see in the graphic below.
Dislike the Facebook Dislike Button
On an unrelated but important note, be sure not to fall for the Facebook dislike button. Believe me I am sure some of you would be inclined to hit such a button when I start writing about my political views but rest assured if you do see such a button online it is a fake and you may see recurring cell phone charges on your bill as a result.
Here is an excerpt from the New York Times article on the matter:
The hook comes in a status update from a friend reading “I just got the Dislike button, so now I can dislike all of your dumb posts lol!!” or “Get the official DISLIKE button NOW!”, which includes a link to a rogue Facebook application. If you install the app – which involves handing the scammers permission to access your public information, post to your wall and retrieve your data at any time they like – it automatically posts a status update from you in the hopes of ensnaring your Facebook friends, too.