As of yesterday, two shopping malls in the US will track customers’ movements via their mobile phones.
The shopping malls – one in southern California, the other in Virginia – are run by Forest City Commercial Management, and use a system known as FootPath Technology.
In fact, get ready to crank God Save the Queen (the 1745 version), as the technology was created by Britain’s own Path Intelligence. I feel so proud.
Forest City reassures customers that absolutely no personal data is being collected. Y’know, a bit like Google Maps Street View. The anonymous data will simply allow the mall owners to identify patterns in shoppers’ movements.
Path Intelligence explains how its technology works: “FootPath works by detecting a randomly generated, frequently changing signal from your mobile phone. This random signal is detected by a number of our units within the premises.
“We combine the information detected from the mobile phone signal with a proprietary mathematical algorithm developed by us. This allows us to determine your path through premises equipped with our receiver units.
“Importantly, our detector units do not allow us to obtain your telephone number, to listen to any of your calls, read any SMS messages read or sent by you, or to log details of any calls or SMS messages made or received by you. Neither does any of the information received allow us to identify you or any group of individuals.”
But don’t worry, you can easily opt out. By turning off your phone whenever you’re in the mall. Nice.
via: Mobile Burn