According to several web-sites the post iOS iPhone and 3G iPad are quietly recording the position of the device together with a time stamp into an internal hidden file.

This obviously makes it easy for anyone with the right access and software to extract the information and track your movements as far back as the data goes.

Although this is quite old news as it came out last year, many people are still unaware that iPhones can do this.

The researchers who found this, Alisdair Allan and Pete Warden, say that this capability must have been intentional by Apple the makers as the data is transferred to back-ips and is restorable. They have asked Apple to comment but have not as yet had a reply.

You can download an application HERE that will allow you to see what Latitude, Longitude and timing data the internal file "consolidated.db" holds.

The data it seems is not derived from Satnav but from telephone transmission mast geolocation (cell-tower triangulation).

It does not appear that the data ever leaves the device other than when backing up to a computer. But what Apples plans for this little data file remain unclear.

But a quick look at their iPhone software T&C shows that they've covered themselves legally.

'(b) Location Data. Apple and its partners and licensees may provide certain services through your iPhone that rely upon location information. To provide and improve these services, where available, Apple and its partners and licensees may transmit, collect, maintain, process and use your location data, including the real-time geographic location of your iPhone, and location search queries. The location data and queries collected by Apple are collected in a form that does not personally identify you and may be used by Apple and its partners and licensees to provide and improve location-based products and services. By using any location-based services on your iPhone, you agree and consent to Apple's and its partners' and licensees' transmission, collection, maintenance, processing and use of your location data and queries to provide and improve such products and services. You may withdraw this consent at any time by going to the Location Services setting on your iPhone and either turning off the global Location Services setting or turning off the individual location settings of each location-aware application on your iPhone. Not using these location features will not impact the non location-based functionality of your iPhone. When using third party applications or services on the iPhone that use or provide location data, you are subject to and should review such third party's terms and privacy policy on use of location data by such third party applications or services.'

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