For a few hours, the different Spanish operators that have agreed to be part of the new survey of the National Statistics Institute (INE), all the movements we make are registered obviously accompanied by our smartphone, a device used to track us to know how we move the Spanish.
The reason given by this organization to make a massive compilation of the location and displacements of the Spaniards is motivated to be able to improve infrastructure and know more specifically where public services should be improved. Fortunately, depending on which operator we can avoid participating in this study.
In recent years, privacy has become a priority for many users, especially for those who have started getting tired of seeing how their digital data has become an object of commerce for large companies. The drop that fills the glass is this study, a study that according to the INE complies with the Data Protection Law, but the human being the first thing it does is distrust, especially if behind this study is a government.
How many days will the tracking last?
This new INE survey in collaboration with the operators will be carried out in different phases. The first has begun a few hours and will be operational until November 21. The next phases will be on November 24 (Sunday), December 25, July 20 and August 15.
Which operators collaborate with the INE?
The three operators that have confirmed their participation in this study are the big three: Movistar, Vodafone / Lowi and Orange. If your telephone operator is not one of these, you can rest assured, since the data related to your location will not leave your offices at any time to be part of this study.
How to prevent operators from sharing your location
Of the three large operators that collaborate with this INE study, only Movistar does not offer us any option so that it does not share where we move accompanied by our smartphone, so if you are customers of this company You will have to resort to other methods that we explain in the next section.
Both Vodafone and Lowi, the latter is part of Vodafone, allow us through the application available for Android not allow the operator to share our data with the National Statistics Institute, an option that unfortunately does not offer us the French operator Orange, although it does give us the option.
From the application My Vodafone, access to My Account> Permissions and Preference> Permissions and activate the tab "I do not accept that Vodafone cedes anonymized data …
From the application My lowi, we access Settings> Notifications> Permissions and Preferences and uncheck the box “I do not accept that Lowi gives anonymized data…
The French operator Orange, also allows us to prevent the data of our location from being shared with the INE, however, they have not wanted to share life and They do not allow us to do it through the application for mobile devices.
In order to do so, we must send an e-mail together with our ID to firstname.lastname@example.org or send a postal letter to Orange Spain in Madrid Paseo Club Deportivo 1, Parque Empresarial, La Finca Edificio 8, 28223 Pozuelo de Alarcón, Madrid.
If you are a Movistar customer and do not want to be part of this new survey, the only way to do so is to deactivating the 4G connection of your device when you are going to move and activate it when you are already at your destination or make use of the Wi-Fi connection from where you are, in this way the operator will not be able to obtain at any time data related to the movements you make habitually.
What data is shared with the INE
To try to justify Movistar's decision not to allow users to be part of this study / survey, the company states that all data that will be shared about the location of users replaces personal information, including that related to the number phone with unique irreversible identifiers.
What does this mean? That means there is no way to know who these data belong to by doing the reverse process, so we can be completely sure that only the location data of our terminal will be shared, never the phone number and the holder of them.
The National Statistics Institute states that, like all the statistics that this agency has, they fulfill all the requirements of the Data Protection Law, including the GRPD. The INE will pay half a million euros to the operators by the data that they provide, our data after all, so it is demonstrated once again that the privacy of users should be a priority for everyone, which prevents third-party companies, such as this case, trade with our data without really getting anything in return.
Being a public body, the money that the INE will pay to the operators, get out of our taxes. Draw your own conclusions.
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