Yes, I love my coffee and at times I pay $4 for a cup of coffee. So when the article (at https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/tim-hortons-app-1.6536175) hit my eyes, I was a little stunned. You see, we all have a price, but when I see ‘Tim Hortons proposes settlement in class-action suits over data-tracking app’ with the text “Proposed settlement would offer free coffee and doughnut to affected users” I pretty much pissed myself laughing. Are people buying that? You see, the issue is not merely “Tim Hortons says in court documents it would also permanently delete any geolocation information it may have collected between April 1, 2019 and Sept. 30, 2020, and direct third-party service providers to do the same.” I very much believe that this would happen. My issue is with the back ups and where they were stored. There is absolutely no guarantee that these have not been duplicated for certain other people, that means the data is out there. And I do believe that enough people realise this at present. You see the premise of “In a report released last month, privacy commissioners said people who downloaded the Tim Hortons app had their movements tracked and recorded every few minutes — even when the app was not open on their phones” requires intent. To assure the makers of “had their movements tracked and recorded every few minutes” events and captures had to be in place, redirecting the numbers they get and even more so when we see “even when the app was not open on their phones” As I personally see it, someone went out of their way to get data, the reason could be anything, but that essential step required certain additional steps and I reckon that the backup was set in motion seconds after it was made with the ‘illustrious’ statement “copy me, I want to travel!” As such there is no doubt in my mind that this is a realistic setting. The fact that I see no mention of backups anywhere, and that the commission might not have looked into that is also a little troubling. There is a larger stage in play and the avoidance of certain corners is not a good thing, but then I might merely be imagining things. That happens too.
But I have seen issues in Europe in the late 90’s and the avoidance of back-ups by some people makes me wonder if that same trick could be in play. It might merely be me. But all that data for a coffee and a Danish?
That might be the best deal any data collector ever has been offered. So do enjoy your coffee whilst Mister X investigates where exactly you might have been and if you were there alone. Because it is not merely you, it is all around you that matters as well, and even if one app did not capture that, another app could capture who was around you at the time one app registered you. That is the larger problem, it is not one, it is what else and that together with the Tim Horton app is the issue, but I am certain that as looked into as well.