Do you use LinkedIn app on your iPad? You are in trouble.
The Next Web has reported that LinkedIn’s iOS app collects personal data from its calendar, without obtaining explicit consent from the app user. It sends it back to the company’s servers in plain text.
Users must opt-in to a feature which allows them to view calendar information from within the LinedIn app. However, once that choice is made the user is not notified of the fact that their personal data, including a meeting’s title, organizer, attendees, meeting times and notes are being transmitted across the internet as plain text. Fortunately that means that if you have not chosen to use this feature, your data is completely secure.
The issue with LinkedIn app was identified by Skycure Security researchers Yair Amit and Adi Sharabani, who at the time of this news report being written, are expected to present the discovery at the Yuval Ne’eman workshop in Tel Aviv on 6 June 2012 (according to Israeli time). This issue with the app raises some questions about whether LinkedIn’s app abides by Apple’s privacy guidelines.
According to LinkedIn spokeswoman Julie Inouye speaking to the New York Times, the data is used to coordinate information across multiple users:
“We use information from the meeting data to match LinkedIn profile information about who you’re meeting with so you have more information about that person.”
However, it still remains unclear why LinkedIn needs so much data. To accomplish the outcome which Inouye describes, the company should only need a user’s unique identifier to feed each attendee the correct information. It currently remains uncertain what LinkedIn or Apple intend to do about the problem, if they really care to.
Later, The Next Web reported that a large number of LinkedIn user accounts have now been compromised. 6.5 million accounts have been hashed and reportedly, encrypted passwords have got leaked. You should change your password, and you should do that as soon as possible.
Are you worried about your LinkedIn account? What do you want to say about the LinkedIn iOS app? Post your comments.
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