58% American smartphone users use location-based apps, despite safety concerns

Telecom Lead America: 58 percent of American smartphone
customers use location-based applications, despite concerns about safety and
use of their personal information for marketing purposes.

ISACA said a telephone poll of 1,000 Americans shows that
many people are concerned about geolocation, which uses data from a computer or
mobile device to identify a physical location.

24 percent concerned about third-party use of personal
information for marketing purposes and strangers knowing too much about
people’s activities.

For 21 percent, personal safety is the next biggest
concern. 43 percent of people do not read the agreements on apps before downloading
them, and of those who do read the agreements, 25 percent believe these
agreements are not clear about how location information is being used

Location-based apps can be tremendously convenient, but
also risky. People should educate themselves to understand how their data is
being used or know how to disable this feature,” said Marios Damianides, past
international president of ISACA and partner, Advisory Services, at Ernst &

ISACA said businesses that collect location-based data
have a responsibility to define an ethical governance policy and communicate it

Applications with geolocation capabilities offer benefits
such as precise navigation, location-based coupons or easy social check-ins. 32
percent of consumers in ISACA’s survey use location-based apps more than they
did a year ago.

Location-based activities most frequently done on a
smartphone, tablet or laptop are getting directions (59 percent), and tagging
photos on social media (44 percent).

38 percent respondents said the next most popular
activity is disabling location-based features on select apps and services.

According to ISACA, malicious use of geolocation data can
put individuals and enterprises at risk when information like gender, race,
occupation and finances is combined with geolocation tags.

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