Current data proves that mobile service providers are making some money from the information about where people live, work and spend their time. This information is being sold to various businesses and even city planners. The amount of information cell phone companies have about where people go is astonishing, but currently it is being used for marketing strategies and internal planning. While this data was once kept private, more mobile carriers are seeking out ways to monetize this data.
Experts see looking at the paths mobile users take to get to their locations could lead to safer roads and better planned cities. While they are attempting to share this with the most privacy possible, there may still be some security risk to their customers. Recently, mobile carriers have been changing their privacy policies to include the ability to give their mobile data to various outside parties. However, cable internet providers have been using this process for a long time in order to monetize their data. So many cell phone providers have felt that this is going to be accepted by their customers as a practice with which they are already familiar.
The only fears that some experts have is that once all of this data has been analyzed, it may be used to find out about the movements and lives of subsets of people. That could be dangerous in the long run, but experts still believe that there may be a large profit to be made from learning how to best monetize this data. Currently, the real time movements of nearly one third of the United States population can be tracked and put to use. Analyzing the data can allow providers to infer how the time is being spent and what the movements. For example, those who stay at one location for eight hours per day are most likely at work. The area they spend most of their time is going to be where they live.
This information may be used to create more accurate maps for businesses, and provide better information to businesses about where potential customers in this area spend their time. While Megapath business VoIP won’t be able to track this kind of information, the GPS in a cell phone can provide insightful information to businesses. This could be used to better create roads in the future, and give businesses better data about where to open a business.