Feeds

iSPY: Apple Stores switch on iBeacon phone sniff spy system

Hey BOB, you sure you don't wanna iThing? Look, there they are! Huh? Huh?

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Apple has switched on its controversial iBeacon snooping system across 254 US stores.

The fruity firm's iSpy network allows Apple to watch fanbois as they walk around an Apple store and then send them various messages depending on where they are in the shop.

This might come in handy when visiting an Apple store, for instance, which is offering the latest iStuff. Glance in its direction or wander past and your iPhone will suddenly spring to life, filled with messages about products you haven't bought yet.

Apple's iBeacon transmitters use Bluetooth to work out customers' location, because GPS doesn't work as well indoors. This functionality was quietly snuck into iOS 7.

To take part all you need to do is download the Apple Store app and agree to let it track your location.

Apple claimed iBeacon offers "a whole new level of micro-location awareness, such as trail markers in a park, exhibits in a museum, or product displays in stores".

What that really means is that whenever you visit somewhere armed with iBeacon transmitters, your iPhone will bombard you with unwanted messages.

Luckily, there's a way to avoid the all-seeing eye of Cupertino: just switch off location services and you can go about your shopping trip without being surveilled.

According to AP, the flagship store on Fifth Avenue, New York City, was first to switch on its system on Friday and by this point every fruity outlet will have gone live. ®

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think

More from The Register

next story
Microsoft's Euro cloud darkens: US FEDS can dig into foreign servers
They're not emails, they're business records, says court
'Things' on the Internet-of-things have 25 vulnerabilities apiece
Leaking sprinklers, overheated thermostats and picked locks all online
iWallet: No BONKING PLEASE, we're Apple
BLE-ding iPhones, not NFC bonkers, will drive trend - marketeers
Multipath TCP speeds up the internet so much that security breaks
Black Hat research says proposed protocol will bork network probes, flummox firewalls
Plug and PREY: Hackers reprogram USB drives to silently infect PCs
BadUSB instructs gadget chips to inject key-presses, redirect net traffic and more
Only '3% of web servers in top corps' fully fixed after Heartbleed snafu
Just slapping a patched OpenSSL on a machine ain't going to cut it, we're told
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
Israel's Iron Dome missile tech stolen by Chinese hackers
Corporate raiders Comment Crew fingered for attacks
prev story

Whitepapers

7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
A new approach to endpoint data protection
What is the best way to ensure comprehensive visibility, management, and control of information on both company-owned and employee-owned devices?