• Thu. Dec 1st, 2022

Tim Hortons mobile app illegally tracked users

ByCindy J. Daddario

Jun 2, 2022

The Tim Hortons coffee shop chain’s mobile app has been found to track people even when it’s turned off, despite “tricking” users into thinking otherwise. It collected data about users, including their movements, where they lived, and where they worked.

After a thorough investigation by state and provincial authorities, the iconic Canadian brand broke the law on mobile tracking and data collection.

In addition, the application generated an “event” each time the user entered a competitor’s premises, a large gym, their home or their office.

Vague language

The original Tim Hortons survey was launched two years ago, and that’s when the company decided to end its data collection program.

However, he retained a contract with a US third-party location service provider whose language was “so vague and permissive” that it would have allowed him to sell anonymized location data. (opens in a new tab)said the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada in a press release (opens in a new tab).

The company also said its use of aggregate location data was “limited” to spot trends, such as whether users have moved to other coffee chains or how the pandemic has affected their coffee buying habits.

The press release further stated that the app “continued to collect large amounts of location data for a year after abandoning its intention to use it for targeted advertising, even though it had no legitimate need for it. do it”.

The company behind the app has been ordered to delete all remaining location data, as well as to force third-party vendors to do the same. He was also ordered to establish and maintain a privacy management program and report to authorities detailing how he plans to remain compliant with data privacy rules and regulations.

No financial penalty, however, but the company said it would fulfill the orders.

Via: Bloomberg (opens in a new tab)