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Illinois Legislature Sends Geolocation Privacy Bill to Governor
We encourage Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner to sign HB 3449, the Geolocation Privacy Protection Act, into law. If signed, this bill will safeguard the privacy of children in the state by protecting the geolocation data collected by smartphones and tablets.
These days, it's crucial for mobile app users to be aware and in control of how their personal information is collected and used, especially when it comes to geolocation data from the devices that kids and teens carry with them everywhere they go. The smartphones and tablets kids use to text their parents, do schoolwork, or post on their social media accounts are often tracking their locations without them even knowing it's happening. Tech companies take the information they've collected over time and sell it to advertisers, analytics companies, and other third parties that profit from the information.
Geolocation data is highly personal, and when it comes to kids, that means revealing data on where a child lives, attends school, and gets medical treatment. In many instances, this information is collected without the child's -- or her parent's -- knowledge or consent.
A recent study from Carnegie Mellon shows that a dozen popular Android apps collect location data roughly every three minutes. Over the two-week study period, these apps collected GPS coordinates accurate to within 50 meters an average of 6,200 times per participant.
If you support putting commonsense limits on the data collected on consumers by app developers and tech companies, sign up to be a Kids Action Advocate today.