So, yeah, remember when Google just straight up forcibly enrolled everybody in Google Buzz and brought the wrath of the entire Internet down on their heads? Or when it turned out those Google Street View cars were also sniffing around for anything with a wireless signal and documenting that, which also made the Internet angry? Guess who apparently was sleeping that week?
CNet has busted Microsoft for gathering the locations of millions of devices and just basically putting that on the Internet for any dimwit or psycho to look through and find. What was gathered? Everything: laptops, smartphones, routers, basically anything that emits a WiFi signal was documented by good old M$. Even creepier, it’s extremely detailed data: In some cases, it can literally tell you which corner of a building the device is sitting in. Oh, and it’s worldwide, meaning places with sterling human rights records like China now basically have an easy way to hunt down all those annoying dissidents if they get on the Internet.
Faced with a blatant violation of the public’s trust and potentially a huge privacy problem, Microsoft…has stonewalled and pretended there’s not any problem at all! Awww! It’s just like it’s 1995 again!
Here, have a mashup from “The Sopranos” that sums this up pretty well: