Twitter bug accidentally caused it to collect unauthorized location data of some iOS users

On Monday, Twitter disclosed a bug that caused it to accidentally collect and share data of some of its iOS users to a trusted Twitter partner.

The Bug only affected a small group of its users who had not enabled precise location feature and yet their location data was collected and shared.

The precise location is a feature available for iOS (if activated) allows Twitter to collect, store and use your device's location GPS, MAPS etc.

The company uses that location information to make Twitter a better platform by showing you more relatable and local content, ads and recommendations.

According to Twitter, if you use more than one Twitter account in your iOS device and enabled sharing location information on one account, Twitter may have collected location data from other accounts used on the same iOS device even if the location feature was not activated.

More on this, Twitter said that they mistakenly sent some portion of location data to one of their advertisement partners, but none of it was precise as the data was already "fuzzed" so only zip code and city data were shared.


Twitter assured the users that the partner company didn't receive their Twitter handles or any other unique identifier and the location data was also not retained.

Twitter said we have confirmed with our partners that the data has not been retained and it existed in the systems for a short time and then deleted.

Building on that bug, Twitter said that they have fixed it and are working hard to make sure it doesn't happen again. We also have reached to the Impacted users to notify that the bug has been fixed.

It is unknown at this time when this location data was shared, as Twitter didn't address this in their post, nor did it name the company that had possession of the location data.

A bug in Twitter impacting collection and sharing of location data on iOS devices
Photo: Justin Sullivan via Getty Images

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