How Much is Your Location Worth?

In the modern era, it’s well known that companies are collecting whatever information they can on you and turning that information into a model to better understand your wants. What comes along with this collection is the explicit terms under which your data will be collected and used, and while we often understand that those collecting the data will invariably sell our data to other users we comfort ourselves by saying it’ll be to other corporate giants.

But what if that wasn’t true?

What if, for a few hundred dollars, you could find the location of someone without having to provide anything at all other than a phone number? Your phone knows where you are (even when you disable the location setting, though with less accuracy) and you cannot disable the emergency location services transponder in your device without rooting the phone first (and even then sometimes). Access to this location data is supposed to be kept tightly under wraps and only available upon request for services like the police, EMS, or firefighters. However, while corporations only sell to other similar sized organizations that leads to a chain of ever smaller players getting access to your location data. This includes individual bounty hunters who only have to supply a few hundred dollars to know where you are within a few dozen feet even though they’re not supposed to have access to that kind of information.

Source: I Gave a Bounty Hunter $300. Then He Located Our Phone