Shopping centre uses mobile phone data to "monitor visitor levels"

Ian Batten igb at
Wed Aug 24 19:04:41 BST 2011

On 24 Aug 2011, at 1638, Chris Edwards wrote:

> On Wed, 24 Aug 2011, James Firth wrote:
> | Reading the blurb from Path Intelligence it reads to me on first scan as
> | though some kind of signature is being cribbed from the subscriber-base
> | station comms. 
> [...]
> | I can't see how this can legally be done without the consent of the 
> | network operator
> For 2G, this bit isn't encrypted, so can be sniffed.
> The specific data gathered (TIMSI) clearly *not* *content*, so not 
> interception under RIPA, if that's what you're thinking of.

I don't think sniffing random traffic data is legal, however, even if it isn't encrypted.  The  Wireless Telegraphy Act 1949 S.5(b)(i) would appear to apply:

> Any person who...otherwise than under the authority of the Postmaster General or in the
> course of his duty as a servant of the Crown, either--

>    (i) uses any wireless telegraphy apparatus with intent to obtain information
> as to the contents, sender or addressee of any message (whether sent by means
> of wireless telegraphy or not) which neither the person using the apparatus nor
> any person on whose behalf he is acting is authorised by the Postmaster
> General to receive; or

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