Tamoco sale of Norwegians' location data enables citizen, military tracking

Occurred: May 2020

NUK location data broker Tamoco sold large volumes of personally identifiable data, sparking controversy about the intrusiveness of its practices. 

Norwegian broadcaster NRK bought 460 million rows of raw location data for 140,000 mobile devices for GBP 3,000, enabling the broadcaster to identify individuals and even track military personnel.

Norwegian data protection authority Datatilsynet subsequently condemned the sale of Norwegians' location data, and alerted other EU data protection authorities, including the UK Information Commissioner's Office ('ICO'), which subsequently announced its own investigation into Tamoco.

Tamoco says on on its website that it is a data privacy-aware geospatial company that accurately understands device location with unprecedented accuracy. The controversy raised questions about the effectiveness of these privacy measures. 

➕ October 2021. The ICO reprimanded Tamoco for 'failing to provide sufficient privacy information to UK citizens'.

Operator: Tamoco
Developer: Tamoco
Country: Norway, UK
Sector: Technology
Purpose: Assess & enhance location data
Technology: Location tracking
Issue: Privacy
Transparency: Governance; Privacy

Page info
Type: Incident
Published: April 2021
Last updated: October 2021