When news broke about Life360 being one of the biggest data brokers as a side-hustle, the blowback was huge. This company, which people pay to use to see the location of friends & family, was not only collecting all this information but also selling it all to at least a dozen companies. Umar Shakir at The Verge has more.
Life360, a safety and tracking service that helps its users to keep tabs on the whereabouts of family and friends who also use the app, is scaling back its user data sales business to just two partners: Allstate Arity and Placer.ai (via The Markup). This news comes after the company announced a deal to acquire the item tracker Tile in November and a December report from The Markup said Life360 was the source of precise location data to as many as a dozen data brokers. That report cited sources within the industry who called Life360 one of the largest sources of data.The Verge
Life360 really hasn’t learned its lesson because Shakir’s article also states that you still must opt-out of your data being sold to Placer.ai. I’m sure the opposite action wherein asking their customers to opt-in would likely yield a near-zero result.
This entire story underscores the power of data collection and what a big business it is. Verizon is doing it, likely a handful of companies you do business with doing it, and Life360 is too. They simply were the ones to catch hell for it. But this will not stop things like this from happening. We live in times where information about us is more valuable than our money. Let’s not let our guard down to give our information away so willingly. Privacy depends on our resilience.