Twitter Privacy Gets Thrust into Spotlight as iOS User Data Is Leaked

By CCN: If we were given a dollar every time a tech behemoth “inadvertently” shared our data, we’d be as rich as their CEOs. Twitter is the latest to fess up about an oopsie, drawing more attention and questions about this disturbing trend among tech giants.

Before the fix, the bug was collecting and sharing users’ location data. As noted by Engadget, the bug affected people who were logged into more than one account on Twitter’s iOS app.

People who had activated the precise location feature on the app were particularly vulnerable. Worse, if users activated the feature on one account and not the other, Twitter’s bug didn’t discriminate. It allowed Twitter to collect location data from the other account, too.

But for Twitter employees who discovered the bug, it would still be wreaking havoc.

Twitter Ad Partners Cited As Possible Culprit

Twitter tried to kill the bug by pulling location data from the information it sends to one of its advertising partners, but that didn't work as planned, according to Engadget. It found that precise location data was not revealed. That’s because it was masked by Twitter down to a 5 kilometer-squared area. The social media giant told Engadget that it didn’t receive usernames or other details that could have compromised anyone's identity.

This doesn't mean that the company didn’t share location data that it wasn't supposed to have collected with that partner, according to Engadget.

As if this was something to smile about, Twitter proclaimed that the ad partner only stored the information for a “short time before deleting it as part of the company's normal data-handling procedures.”

This is the fourth time the company has found a bug on its platform, according to a Fox Business broadcast Tuesday morning.

TWTR shares are down approximately 4% over the last five-day period.

Twitter shares are up fractionally today. | Source: Yahoo Finance

Folks who were affected by this particular bug may have been contacted. Twitter says it didn't retain the information. It's best to contact Twitter if you worry.

However, at the end of the day, does it matter?

Facebook, Amazon, and Google have all come under fire for mishandling user data information. The responses have been lackadaisical and even offensive. CCN reported that these mishaps beg the question of how these companies, supposedly staffed by the brightest tech minds around, can’t shore up their systems to avoid breaches?

If you use any of them, you’re to just know that sh** happens. Either live under a rock, avoiding such technology, or deal with it.

This article was edited by Gerelyn Terzo.

Last modified (UTC): May 14, 2019 5:08 PM

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Tedra DeSue @tedradesue

If you can buy it, trade it, invest in it, or sell it, I write about it. For more than 20 years, I've covered all things finance. Based in Atlanta, Ga., I threw myself into covering the crypto space with a keen understanding that it would be an industry disruptor. I'm in constant search for the real Satoshi Nakamoto!

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