The UK’s 10 biggest shopping centres will begin tracking customers’ cell phones to better improve their services, reports the Daily Mail.The technology, known as FootPath, tracks where shoppers are moving around the mall. Despite claims that the technology does not access any personal information on cell phones, the idea that people are being monitored via their mobile devices has understandably caused some concern in the UK.
The Guardian reports that campaign groups have expressed anger at the fact that shopping centres are assuming they have the right to track people via their mobiles, even if there is no way data can be used to identify information about the user.
An article published on campaign group, Big Brother Watch‘s website read:
“The FootPath technology being used in the UK is not capable of capturing personal information or sending communications to people’s phones. It is certainly not the kind of equipment used to track individuals over large distances, or capable of intercepting phone calls.
However, as technology improves, those facilities will become more accessible, and consumers need to have faith that the law protects their privacy.“
Shopping centres have defended the installation of such surveillance equipment as a means to try and identify what countries want. Malls also warn shoppers that they are being tracked by posting signs outside their complexes.
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