The fitness market is growing and this has led to the development of literally thousands of fitness applications entering the market daily. Most of the fitness applications are perfectly harmless. They provide services like counting the calories burned, keeping track of workouts, collecting various data about calories, and using the data collected to design a customized workout plan. However, a fitness application that was designed by one fitness company goes a very controversial step further. Their application actually reveals sensitive information about various military bases and spy posts around the world.
A Tracking Map
If you’ve ever downloaded one of those fitness application, you already know that they make various requests of the user. For example, they ask the user permission to know their location and several other permissions, which are usually granted in order to use the application. Strava released information that their application produces a visualization data map that records the users activity. The controversy surrounds the fact that the application has access to millions of GPS data points. This makes it extremely easy for the application to track down any location across the world. This includes secret locations and spy posts. Even more controversial is the fact that the Strava application is very popular and available to download to a smartphone or fitness trackers. The availability of the application caused military personnel to take note and quickly discover that the Strava data map is detailed enough to reveal secret military locations.
Strava has the potential to cause great harm. The real danger begins when a soldier decides to download the application and use it on a regular basis for their fitness workout. For example, the application could log a soldier’s jogging routine and show distinctive markings that reveal the location of their military base. The leak of this sensitive data is a definite security breach. Of course, the key to stopping such security breaches in the future is in the hands of the military. It’s simple. All applications that are used by active military personnel must pass inspection before approval for use by military personnel.