A brilliant look at one man's mobile life over six months

What does your mobile carrier know about you? Just how much information do they collect? And what the hell does it look like? German Green politician Malte Spitz has a brilliant TED talk showing what happened when he fought Deutsche Telekom to see just what was being collected under a European law -- and won. His prize? Six months of his mobile life. Some 35,830 lines of code. And an eye-opening look at what carriers, governments and, yes, private companies could learn about you.

It's far too easy to cry that the sky is falling when it comes to online privacy. (See Exhibits A, B, C and D, to note but a few.) But that doesn't mean there's not cause for concern, or that developers don't take it seriously. (They most certainly do.) Spitz, along with ZEIT ONLINE, has given us an incredible granular look at some of that data, but we each still need to be vigilant with our online lives. Be sure to hit the link below for the full infographic.

Source: TED; Infographic: ZEIT ONLINE

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Phil Nickinson
  • Lol, my mobile Google Chrome browser says "Looking for plugin" Keep looking, my friend.
  • +1
  • Seriously, now that this blog is aware that Google's premiere tablet doesn't officially support flash, you guys need to start setting the bar by using HTML5 when posting videos.
  • Seriously, I mean, wouldn't it be great if we could control the format in which other websites make their embeds available? That would be, like, the greatest thing ever. Only, that's not how things work, and I'm kinda surprised you guys don't know that.
  • You're right. I may have been too harsh with my comment, for that, I sincerely apologize.
  • Pro comment right there. +1... that being said, if anyone could do it, it would be you Phil. Please get all of the internets running html 5, pronto.
  • Daaaaaamn!!!!! That was funny!! Like, seriously!!!
  • Nice.
  • If you click the TED link the video plays without flash.
  • I really hate to say this, but what good is Chrome if the stock browser is still needed to have a full Internet experience.?
  • Ditto on the looking for
  • I hate chrome on my tablet but luv it on my desktop, thats why im stil usin the stock browser just for the flash lo.
  • I cant get the stock ASOP browser to work either on my nexus 7. It wont even load anything.
  • I thought flash was out dated and a thing of the past?
  • I thought there is a way to install flash on the Nexus 7? If so just do that and switch browsers.
  • Oops. Didn't mean to derail the topic of the post.
  • I came here to read pointless griping about online privacy, yet all I get is pointless griping about flash... :( -Suntan
  • +1 awesome!
  • OMG. The humans are riding in boxes talking to other humans on smaller boxes. Once they get out of the box they walk into a bigger box!!!! AHHHHH!!!! Turn off the tracking NOWWWWWW!!!!!!
  • Looks like they are still using the cup & string communication protocol in the EU.
  • Don't let Verizon know about this tech, they will charge you per thread and make you share soup cans.
  • Thanks for posting that video Phil. This guy makes a very important point about the issues of data retention and the power the carriers, ISPs and state are holding. Doubtless they would say "this is about fighting terrorism". Unfortunately, I simply don't trust them. I consider the intelligence community a far greater threat to our liberty than alkida.