TomTom Apologizes For Selling Speeding Data To Dutch Government

from the privacy? dept

TomTom, the troubled GPS navigation device maker, was forced to quickly apologize after news reports came out about how the company had sold aggregate data on driving habits it collected from the devices to the Dutch government, who then used that data to figure out where to set up speed traps and speed cameras. TomTom claims they thought the data would just be used for improving traffic safety, not for speed traps (though, I would imagine that some would claim that speed traps are a way to improve traffic safety). TomTom's CEO Harold Goddijn didn't exactly come off as convincing in saying:
"We don't like that because our customers don't like it... We will prevent that type of usage of our data in the future."
Of course, they could just not like it because it's intrusive. Then they might have thought about it before selling the data. And it's not clear how they can sell the data and only make sure that it's used for one purpose and not others.
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Filed Under: data, gps, netherlands, privacy, tracking
Companies: tomtom


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  1. icon
    Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile), 28 Apr 2011 @ 3:50pm

    Like other things that could be used for evil...

    "We're just collecting your porn surfing habits to help make your porn experience better and certainly not to help build a divorce case against you."

    "We're just collecting data on your online activity at work to help us target our demographics better and certainly not to get your slacker ass fired."

    "We're just collecting Pokemon because they're so damn cute and certainly not to catch them all."

    "We're just collecting expired food products in hopes of making your store safer to shop at and certainly not to build a class action lawsuit against your non-date-reading asses."

    "We're just keylogging everything in an effort to prove the Dvorak's superiority and certainly not to build a database of credit card numbers and associated information."

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