UCL News


Users wanted for a new app on location privacy expectations and tracking

22 May 2018

TrackingAdvisor is a research study that explores the privacy expectations of individuals when it comes to tracking their location and inferring personal information about them.

TrackingAdvisor UCL researchers have developed an app that infers your significant places and information about yourself from the places you visit. 

Who is it for?

This research study is open to everyone. You just need an iPhone and carry it regularly.

What will it involve?

You will install the TrackingAdvisor app on your phone, and it will automatically collect background information about your daily activities, with minimal impact on battery life. From this, researchers will infer your significant places and personal information from the places you visited. 

The personal information you reviewed will then be aggregated so you can see how you spend your time and the places you visited. We will ask you to provide your feedback on the information we have inferred (about once a day).

What else do I need to know?

The application will be gathering information in the background (location, physical activity, battery levels, Wi-Fi connectivity, and phone interactions within the application). Periodically, the information collected will be securely transmitted to UCL servers. The information collected will only be used for research projects at UCL. 

We are putting all the necessary security measures in place to protect the participant's collected data and assure that their data is only used for academic research purposes and will not be shared to third parties.

How do I sign up?

To participate, you will need to install our app, TrackingAdvisor, on your phone by visiting this link.

You can find more information on the study website.

Please contact the researchers should you have any questions:
Benjamin Baron, Postdoctoral Research Associate
Mirco Musolesi, Reader in Data Science

This study has received ethical approval (ref: 12545/001)

Benjamin Baron & Mirco Musolesi, UCL Department of Geography