If you have a Tile tracker, your data could be for sale

Life360's acquisition of Tile is putting owners of geolocation tags in an uproar: here's what's happening

When it comes to personal data, including data acquired through tools and devices equipped with location systems, the storage and handling of that data is paramount. The use and sale of such information by companies can be a potentially endless source of revenue, which is all the more reason for Tile tracker users to raise their antennae and pay attention to what's going on.

Last month, the U.S.-based tracking systems company was acquired by Life360, another American company specializing in providing location-based services to users around the world. The latter's flagship product is the app of the same name: launched in 2008, it shares one's coordinates, notifications, emergency messages and more with family members, friends in one's circles and third parties that offer specific services based on a person's location. Although, at least at first glance, everything may seem perfectly normal, a report recently published by "The Markup" is worrying users and experts, as it would have exposed some shady behaviors on the part of the company.

Tile and Life360, what's going on?

According to the document, Life360 is ready to sell the data recorded by the trackers of 33 million Tile users. An extremely large amount of data and users, due to the fact that Tile was the first to produce the well-known tags to be applied to keychains, backpacks and other valuables in order to keep track of them and avoid any possibility of losing them forever.

As early as 2020, as pointed out by "The Markup", the company would have entered its coffers as much as 16 million dollars with the sale of the locations of the users of its services. To point the finger against Life360 there would be some workers in the sector, such as a former employee of the partner company Cuebiq, which would confirm that in the past the same information would be widely exploited for the realization of marketing campaigns, made anceh by third companies to which the data were sold.

Life360, the denial of the company

Right away came the denial by the founder and CEO of Life360, Chris Hulls. For the number 1 of the company, the data of the subscribers to the application are a fundamental resource for the company, indispensable to provide the free services that are usually part of the package of its best-known product.

At the same time, however, Hulls stressed how Life360 has put in place stringent policies on user privacy; the information, he explained, would not allow in any way the identification of the person connected to them. A due reassurance even if, as it happens in these cases, it could not be enough to make users sleep peacefully.