[LINK] Tracking Mobiles

stephen at melbpc.org.au stephen at melbpc.org.au
Sat Mar 5 18:23:08 AEDT 2011

Mobile tracking system to be tested in Beijing: Report

AFP, Mar 3, 2011  (This Times of India article is copied here in-full) 

BEIJING: A system designed to track the location of millions of mobile 
phone users is to be tested in Beijing, sparking concerns over privacy, 
state media reported. 

The information platform will enable authorities to check on the location 
of China Mobile's more than 17 million users in the capital, the Global 
Times newspaper said, citing the Beijing Municipal Science and Technology 

The commission made the announcement in a statement posted on its website 
on Monday but it was later removed, the newspaper said. 

A spokeswoman for China Mobile, the world's largest mobile phone 
operator, said she could not immediately respond to questions from AFP 
and no one at the commission was available to comment. 

The official Beijing Daily newspaper said Wednesday the project 
would "round up" information on mobile users' movements around the city 
including their time of departure, destination and means of transport. 

The data will be used to better control traffic and monitor the 
population, the Global Times said, citing an unidentified employee at the 

"Our focus is to get general statistics for better traffic management and 
population monitoring," the employee said. 

"For example, if you want to determine the number of migrants in Beijing, 
the platform is far more precise than a door-to-door census." 

The system will be tested in two densely populated areas in the city's 
north by the end of June, the Global Times said. 

The announcement has raised concerns that the system will infringe the 
privacy of mobile users, despite pledges by officials that they would 
make sure personal data was not leaked, the Global Times said. 

The newspaper said 23 people, some of whom had been employed to handle 
China Mobile's customer service issues, were currently on trial in 
Beijing for selling personal information, such as users' location, on the 



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