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Pokemon Go knows Where You Are. Is it A Problem?

Recently, some experts on privacy have raised a few questions regarding Pokemon Go’s ability to know exactly where you are, at any moment. And location is not the only thing that the creators of the game know about you. The game requires access to photos, files, camera and contacts on your phone. Interesting, right? Pokemon Go creator Niantic recently declared:

“Network provider information is also collected. Country is collected and stored … language may be stored … items collected or purchased … mobile operating system, mobile device identifier, and hardware build information.”

Personal details at risk?

Privacy experts have recently warned players that Pokemon Go along with many other phone apps that require this kind of access may put your personal information at risk. These details can be exploited both commercially and criminally.

First of all, these kinds of apps, that track people’s movement, in time will reveal the player’s personal profile. They will know your day to day schedule, where you are going, what are you doing and how much time you spend doing it. Plus, the place where you work, where you live or where you are taking your kids.

In addition, the St. Louis Police think that many Pokemon Go players have tricked others into a string of robberies. Niantic did not respond to these accusations. The company only said that the data collected from players help the performance of the game.

Players are not worried

Most of them are saying that they are not that important for someone to steal their personal data. Wrong! Everyone’s personal information matters and it should not be revealed to anyone. It is not about being important or not, it is about being safe or not.

The protection of young people is important.  Kids younger than 13 can register into Pokemon Go by simply giving a fake date of birth. Furthermore, the company has no way of knowing if this detail is correct or not. Parent must get themselves into this phenomenon. They must be aware of the fact that almost everyone can access their kids’ location and data. The problem is that some parents are even more obsessed with these kinds of apps than their children. Who protects who?

People are not aware of the fact that, when they download and install an app, their personal details are captured. And even if they are aware of it, they think nothing will happen to them. The general “I’ll be fine!” phenomenon.

From identity theft to information selling

Finally, the information may not be used, but it can surely be sold. Researchers found out that Pokemon Go players’ release agreement is not entirely clear. Identity theft is another option.

All in all, while we agree that some apps can be fun and entertaining, our own safety should always come first. In conclusion, parents must search if their child is sharing personal data. Parents themselves must not share personal data. This Pokemon Go problem has been subject of discussion since the app was released. It will probably continue to be so.

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About Donna Griggs

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