US may limit use of ‘wearable electronics’ by troops as security threat
Online map divulged base locations, jogging routes in Middle East
Wearable electronics such as fitness tracking wristbands aren’t so harmless if you’re a US soldier in a combat zone.
Stars and Stripes, the US military’s newspaper, reported on Monday that the Pentagon may limit the use of such wearable electronics, after an interactive map was published online that revealed sensitive information about the US soldiers using such personal devices.
The incident involved the posting of a global heat map over the weekend by GPS tracking company Strava. The map reportedly shows regular routes used by some 27 million people around the world, according to the company.
In unpopulated areas — such as in areas American troops operate in Syria and Afghanistan — the newspaper said Strava’s map appears to show the outlines of known US military posts and reveals routes that Americans use to exercise on the posts or move between bases.
Because of this, the Pentagon is said to be reviewing the use of wireless technology, including fitness bands such as Fitbits and smartphones, to make sure that service members aren’t endangered by information collected by such gadgets, which could be exploited by terrorists or hostile states.