Twitter Says It Accidentally Disclosed Geolocation Data To Ad Company

Twitter accidentally collected and shared some users' location data with an ad company, the company said Monday.

“We had intended to remove location data from the fields sent to a trusted partner during an advertising process known as real-time bidding. This removal of location did not happen as planned,” the company stated.

The platform says the glitch affected Apple users with multiple accounts, who allowed Twitter to collect precise location data for one of those accounts. Twitter also says the data sent through the real-time bidding platform wasn't as granular as the information collected. Instead, the data sent through the platform was limited to ZIP codes or cities.

Twitter says it corrected the technical bug and notified people whose data was shared.



“We have fixed this problem and are working hard to make sure it does not happen again,” the company stated. “We’re very sorry this happened.”

The snafu comes as Silicon Valley is under increasing scrutiny over privacy practices. Last month alone, lawmakers introduced three separate bills that would curb companies' ability to collect and use consumers' data.

Twitter itself is operating under a Federal Trade Commission consent decree that prohibits the company from misrepresenting its privacy and security practices. That order resolved an FTC investigation into two security lapses that allowed hackers to gain access to tweets users had marked as private.

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