Have you ever had a déjà vu moment where advertisements pop up online and know your location or what you were just doing?
KHQA spoke with a digital forensic expert who’s worked on cases against companies such as Facebook and Bose
Shawn Davis serves as Director of Forensics at Edelson–a law firm that focuses on privacy. Davis is based out of Chicago now but grew up in Quincy.
“Digital forensics is basically looking into digital artifacts and things that have already happened,” Davis said.
Davis described his job as detective work but with technology.
“We’ll take apart children’s toys that connect to the internet to see what sort of information might be sent or collected about them. We will look into connected cars. We’ll evaluate websites. Look at mobile apps on phones,” Davis said.
The company’s findings are shocking.
“There is a lot of data being sent and collected by data brokers,” Davis stated.
Including on children’s apps.
“Several of these apps have been insecure where an attacker would actually be able to figure out where the children who use the app are and read their text messages. Not only do the apps collect your geolocation. A lot of times your phone is sending your location too,” Davis explained.
“Google is constantly getting your location. They also happen to know if you’ve been walking, riding a bike, if you’re on a train,” Davis said.
Breaches of privacy are all around us.
“Facebook essentially has their face tagging feature where they can recognize you and it will pop up in a little box and say this is this person in this photo. Illinois law requires written consent to do that so basically Facebook didn’t get proper consent for that and made pretty much the world’s largest database,” Davis said.
Even down to the
“We essentially noticed that you install the Bose app on your phone and then if you’re using Spotify or Google music, basically all of your songs that you’re listening to, all that information is being sent back to Bose,” Davis stated.
Davis suggests changing your privacy and location-sharing settings and to do your research.