Discussion:
Tube passengers tracked by phone WiFi
(too old to reply)
Recliner
2017-09-08 13:03:37 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
From:
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>

Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to tackle
overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.

Transport for London (TfL) followed 5.6 million phones over four weeks
before Christmas via wifi in stations and is assessing how to develop the
monitoring system. The trial identified pinch-points in stations,
overcrowding on platforms and favoured routes around the network.

Controversially, the system could be used to sell advertising, with
companies charged more to buy space on platforms where travellers spend the
longest time.

Anonymised phone data is seen as a far more accurate way to track journeys
than entry and exit logs at barriers.

An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.

Transport for London is assessing how best to employ the system in the
future and admitted yesterday that it could be used to track passenger
movements in “real time”.

It said it was talking to the Information Commissioner’s Office about its
plans and passengers could opt out by switching their wifi off. It said
that the phone data was “de-personalised”, with nothing to identify
individuals.

The system works by using 1,070 wifi access points on the Tube network.
They pick up on a code that identifies each phone, the media access control
(MAC) address, and track them from point to point.

Each MAC address was “irreversibly” encrypted, TfL said. Prior to
encryption, a random code is added to each to ensure that the phone cannot
be identified even if the encryption could be reversed. No browsing data
was collected, meaning that emails and the internet habits of passengers
could not be shared with third parties.

Privacy campaigners expressed concern over the technology. Renate Samson,
chief executive of Big Brother Watch, said: “Analysing movements of people
via their device may provide unique analytical benefits but is still a
process of tracking and monitoring as they go about their daily business.
It is critical that the public are completely clear on what is being done,
when, how and why, and how they can opt out.”

TfL, which handles up to 4.8 million journeys a day, spent £100,000 testing
the technology in 54 stations.

Val Shawcross, deputy mayor for transport, said: “The analysis of secure,
de-personalised wifi data could enable us to map the journey patterns of
millions of passengers and understand in much greater detail how people
move around our transport network. It will provide real benefits, helping
TfL tackle overcrowding, provide more information for passengers about
their best route and help prioritise investment.”
Martin Coffee
2017-09-08 13:18:33 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to tackle
overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.
Transport for London (TfL) followed 5.6 million phones over four weeks
before Christmas via wifi in stations and is assessing how to develop the
monitoring system. The trial identified pinch-points in stations,
overcrowding on platforms and favoured routes around the network.
Controversially, the system could be used to sell advertising, with
companies charged more to buy space on platforms where travellers spend the
longest time.
Anonymised phone data is seen as a far more accurate way to track journeys
than entry and exit logs at barriers.
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
Transport for London is assessing how best to employ the system in the
future and admitted yesterday that it could be used to track passenger
movements in “real time”.
It said it was talking to the Information Commissioner’s Office about its
plans and passengers could opt out by switching their wifi off. It said
that the phone data was “de-personalised”, with nothing to identify
individuals.
The system works by using 1,070 wifi access points on the Tube network.
They pick up on a code that identifies each phone, the media access control
(MAC) address, and track them from point to point.
Each MAC address was “irreversibly” encrypted, TfL said. Prior to
encryption, a random code is added to each to ensure that the phone cannot
be identified even if the encryption could be reversed. No browsing data
was collected, meaning that emails and the internet habits of passengers
could not be shared with third parties.
Privacy campaigners expressed concern over the technology. Renate Samson,
chief executive of Big Brother Watch, said: “Analysing movements of people
via their device may provide unique analytical benefits but is still a
process of tracking and monitoring as they go about their daily business.
It is critical that the public are completely clear on what is being done,
when, how and why, and how they can opt out.”
TfL, which handles up to 4.8 million journeys a day, spent £100,000 testing
the technology in 54 stations.
Val Shawcross, deputy mayor for transport, said: “The analysis of secure,
de-personalised wifi data could enable us to map the journey patterns of
millions of passengers and understand in much greater detail how people
move around our transport network. It will provide real benefits, helping
TfL tackle overcrowding, provide more information for passengers about
their best route and help prioritise investment.”
Let's face it. Even if encrypted, you cannot anonymise a MAC address as
it is unique to each phone.
Sam Wilson
2017-09-08 14:00:45 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Martin Coffee
[snip]
[TfL] said it was talking to the Information Commissioner’s Office about its
plans and passengers could opt out by switching their wifi off. It said
that the phone data was “de-personalised”, with nothing to identify
individuals.
The system works by using 1,070 wifi access points on the Tube network.
They pick up on a code that identifies each phone, the media access control
(MAC) address, and track them from point to point.
Each MAC address was “irreversibly” encrypted, TfL said. Prior to
encryption, a random code is added to each to ensure that the phone cannot
be identified even if the encryption could be reversed. No browsing data
was collected, meaning that emails and the internet habits of passengers
could not be shared with third parties.
[snip]
Let's face it. Even if encrypted, you cannot anonymise a MAC address
as it is unique to each phone.
You can turn it into something that can't be (realistically) turned
back into a MAC address that can be used to identify the
phone/tablet/laptop/whatever.

Sam
--
The University of Edinburgh is a charitable body, registered in
Scotland, with registration number SC005336.
Martin Coffee
2017-09-08 14:40:46 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Martin Coffee
[snip]
[TfL] said it was talking to the Information Commissioner’s Office about its
plans and passengers could opt out by switching their wifi off. It said
that the phone data was “de-personalised”, with nothing to identify
individuals.
The system works by using 1,070 wifi access points on the Tube network.
They pick up on a code that identifies each phone, the media access control
(MAC) address, and track them from point to point.
Each MAC address was “irreversibly” encrypted, TfL said. Prior to
encryption, a random code is added to each to ensure that the phone cannot
be identified even if the encryption could be reversed. No browsing data
was collected, meaning that emails and the internet habits of passengers
could not be shared with third parties.
[snip]
Let's face it. Even if encrypted, you cannot anonymise a MAC address
as it is unique to each phone.
You can turn it into something that can't be (realistically) turned back
into a MAC address that can be used to identify the
phone/tablet/laptop/whatever.
You don't have to turn the "anonymised" back to a MAC address to
de-anonymise the data. You just encrypt a MAC address and identify the
location data in just the same manner as the tracking occurs. Thus the
location can still be re-associated with the original MAC address.

There has been recent suggestions that it might become a criminal
offence to de-anonymise anonymised personal information. It seems to me
that this legislation is urgently needed.
Sam Wilson
2017-09-08 16:34:37 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Martin Coffee
Post by Sam Wilson
Post by Martin Coffee
[snip]
[TfL] said it was talking to the Information Commissioner’s Office about its
plans and passengers could opt out by switching their wifi off. It said
that the phone data was “de-personalised”, with nothing to identify
individuals.
The system works by using 1,070 wifi access points on the Tube network.
They pick up on a code that identifies each phone, the media access control
(MAC) address, and track them from point to point.
Each MAC address was “irreversibly” encrypted, TfL said. Prior to
encryption, a random code is added to each to ensure that the phone cannot
be identified even if the encryption could be reversed. No browsing data
was collected, meaning that emails and the internet habits of passengers
could not be shared with third parties.
[snip]
Let's face it. Even if encrypted, you cannot anonymise a MAC address
as it is unique to each phone.
You can turn it into something that can't be (realistically) turned
back into a MAC address that can be used to identify the
phone/tablet/laptop/whatever.
You don't have to turn the "anonymised" back to a MAC address to
de-anonymise the data. You just encrypt a MAC address and identify the
location data in just the same manner as the tracking occurs. Thus the
location can still be re-associated with the original MAC address.
Sure, if you know a particular MAC address and the encryption procedure
and access to the location data then you may be able (and I note Dr B's
comments in his response) to recreate the key and therefore track the
MAC address. Most of us (and I again I bow to Dr B) probably can't do
that.
Post by Martin Coffee
There has been recent suggestions that it might become a criminal
offence to de-anonymise anonymised personal information. It seems to
me that this legislation is urgently needed.
Surely the most likely people to want to do this would be criminals
anyway, so criminalising their activities seems slightly pointless.
Deterring casual peepers is probably worth doing.

Sam
--
The University of Edinburgh is a charitable body, registered in
Scotland, with registration number SC005336.
Someone Somewhere
2017-09-09 09:37:54 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Sam Wilson
Post by Martin Coffee
Post by Sam Wilson
[snip]
[TfL] said it was talking to the Information Commissioner’s Office about its
plans and passengers could opt out by switching their wifi off. It said
that the phone data was “de-personalised”, with nothing to identify
individuals.
The system works by using 1,070 wifi access points on the Tube network.
They pick up on a code that identifies each phone, the media access control
(MAC) address, and track them from point to point.
Each MAC address was “irreversibly” encrypted, TfL said. Prior to
encryption, a random code is added to each to ensure that the phone cannot
be identified even if the encryption could be reversed. No browsing data
was collected, meaning that emails and the internet habits of passengers
could not be shared with third parties.
[snip]
Let's face it.  Even if encrypted, you cannot anonymise a MAC
address as it is unique to each phone.
You can turn it into something that can't be (realistically) turned
back into a MAC address that can be used to identify the
phone/tablet/laptop/whatever.
You don't have to turn the "anonymised" back to a MAC address to
de-anonymise the data.  You just encrypt a MAC address and identify
the location data in just the same manner as the tracking occurs.
Thus the location can still be re-associated with the original MAC
address.
Sure, if you know a particular MAC address and the encryption procedure
and access to the location data then you may be able (and I note Dr B's
comments in his response) to recreate the key and therefore track the
MAC address.  Most of us (and I again I bow to Dr B) probably can't do
that.
Surely the most likely people to want to do this would be criminals
anyway, so criminalising their activities seems slightly pointless.
Deterring casual peepers is probably worth doing.
Surely the problem is if this becomes widespread as eventually you'll
get enough data to identify not just the phone but the individual.

It's fine if it's kept to the tube, but let's take the advertising
angle, presumably the advertisers won't be satisfied with just knowing
what the busiest platform is but would prefer to target their adverts to
one or more groups of people on that platform.

By hooking up a similar system with retailers they work out that of the
group on the platform at 08:30 a significant proportion are e.g.
Waitrose shoppers. And it then goes on and on until you end up pretty
much being able to identify the iindividual, what they buy, where they
live etc without actually ever using any personally identifiable
information.

I'm not sure of the relevant legislation but presumably the only way to
avoid this is that each entity having such a system has to have a
different algorithm (or at least key) for anonymising the MAC data so
each data set remains siloised (but would the supplier of the system
still be able to join the different datasets?)
Graeme Wall
2017-09-09 09:47:23 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Sam Wilson
Post by Martin Coffee
Post by Sam Wilson
[snip]
[TfL] said it was talking to the Information Commissioner’s Office about its
plans and passengers could opt out by switching their wifi off. It said
that the phone data was “de-personalised”, with nothing to identify
individuals.
The system works by using 1,070 wifi access points on the Tube network.
They pick up on a code that identifies each phone, the media access control
(MAC) address, and track them from point to point.
Each MAC address was “irreversibly” encrypted, TfL said. Prior to
encryption, a random code is added to each to ensure that the phone cannot
be identified even if the encryption could be reversed. No browsing data
was collected, meaning that emails and the internet habits of passengers
could not be shared with third parties.
[snip]
Let's face it.  Even if encrypted, you cannot anonymise a MAC
address as it is unique to each phone.
You can turn it into something that can't be (realistically) turned
back into a MAC address that can be used to identify the
phone/tablet/laptop/whatever.
You don't have to turn the "anonymised" back to a MAC address to
de-anonymise the data.  You just encrypt a MAC address and identify
the location data in just the same manner as the tracking occurs.
Thus the location can still be re-associated with the original MAC
address.
Sure, if you know a particular MAC address and the encryption
procedure and access to the location data then you may be able (and I
note Dr B's comments in his response) to recreate the key and
therefore track the MAC address.  Most of us (and I again I bow to Dr
B) probably can't do that.
Surely the most likely people to want to do this would be criminals
anyway, so criminalising their activities seems slightly pointless.
Deterring casual peepers is probably worth doing.
Surely the problem is if this becomes widespread as eventually you'll
get enough data to identify not just the phone but the individual.
It's fine if it's kept to the tube,  but let's take the advertising
angle,  presumably the advertisers won't be satisfied with just knowing
what the busiest platform is but would prefer to target their adverts to
one or more groups of people on that platform.
By hooking up a similar system with retailers they work out that of the
group on the platform at 08:30 a significant proportion are e.g.
Waitrose shoppers.  And it then goes on and on until you end up pretty
much being able to identify the iindividual, what they buy, where they
live etc without actually ever using any personally identifiable
information.
I'm not sure of the relevant legislation but presumably the only way to
avoid this is that each entity having such a system has to have a
different algorithm (or at least key) for anonymising the MAC data so
each data set remains siloised (but would the supplier of the system
still be able to join the different datasets?)
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you "targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
--
Graeme Wall
This account not read.
Graham Murray
2017-09-09 12:16:38 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graeme Wall
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you "targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
How effective is this? Maybe I am unusual, but when I am shopping my
phone is normally in my pocket, so I would not see these adverts. Apart
from incoming (phone) calls, the only time I would look at my phone in a
shopping mall is when sat in a coffee shop or restaurant.
Graeme Wall
2017-09-09 18:11:52 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graham Murray
Post by Graeme Wall
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you "targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
How effective is this? Maybe I am unusual, but when I am shopping my
phone is normally in my pocket, so I would not see these adverts. Apart
from incoming (phone) calls, the only time I would look at my phone in a
shopping mall is when sat in a coffee shop or restaurant.
I believe it has only happened in the States so far, but judging by the
number of young women one sees walking round with their smart phones
permanently in front of their faces, it has the potential to be quite
effective. Also I think the initial adverts are text messages so you
would hear an alert.
--
Graeme Wall
This account not read.
Roland Perry
2017-09-09 18:15:02 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Graham Murray
Post by Graeme Wall
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you
"targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
How effective is this? Maybe I am unusual, but when I am shopping my
phone is normally in my pocket, so I would not see these adverts. Apart
from incoming (phone) calls, the only time I would look at my phone in a
shopping mall is when sat in a coffee shop or restaurant.
I believe it has only happened in the States so far
They had a trial at Bluewater really quite a long time ago. I can't be
bothered to look it up, but around ten years perhaps?
--
Roland Perry
Graeme Wall
2017-09-09 21:06:04 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Roland Perry
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Graeme Wall
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you "targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
 How effective is this? Maybe I am unusual, but when I am shopping my
phone is normally in my pocket, so I would not see these adverts. Apart
from incoming (phone) calls, the only time I would look at my phone in a
shopping mall is when sat in a coffee shop or restaurant.
I believe it has only happened in the States so far
They had a trial at Bluewater really quite a long time ago. I can't be
bothered to look it up, but around ten years perhaps?
As long as that? There was a piece about it in New Scientist a few
years back.
--
Graeme Wall
This account not read.
Anna Noyd-Dryver
2017-09-09 19:50:52 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Graham Murray
Post by Graeme Wall
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you "targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
How effective is this? Maybe I am unusual, but when I am shopping my
phone is normally in my pocket, so I would not see these adverts. Apart
from incoming (phone) calls, the only time I would look at my phone in a
shopping mall is when sat in a coffee shop or restaurant.
I believe it has only happened in the States so far, but judging by the
number of young women one sees walking round with their smart phones
permanently in front of their faces, it has the potential to be quite
effective. Also I think the initial adverts are text messages so you
would hear an alert.
Texts would be more difficult that just tailoring already-requested
advertising to your specific location, surely? Though presumably very local
mobile (rather than wifi) transmitters would be able to harvest phone
numbers; by wifi that'd need some way of finding phone numbers from
whatever info wifi can harvest.


Anna Noyd-Dryver
Anna Noyd-Dryver
2017-09-09 13:22:13 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Sam Wilson
Post by Martin Coffee
Post by Sam Wilson
[snip]
[TfL] said it was talking to the Information Commissioner’s Office about its
plans and passengers could opt out by switching their wifi off. It said
that the phone data was “de-personalised”, with nothing to identify
individuals.
The system works by using 1,070 wifi access points on the Tube network.
They pick up on a code that identifies each phone, the media access control
(MAC) address, and track them from point to point.
Each MAC address was “irreversibly” encrypted, TfL said. Prior to
encryption, a random code is added to each to ensure that the phone cannot
be identified even if the encryption could be reversed. No browsing data
was collected, meaning that emails and the internet habits of passengers
could not be shared with third parties.
[snip]
Let's face it.  Even if encrypted, you cannot anonymise a MAC
address as it is unique to each phone.
You can turn it into something that can't be (realistically) turned
back into a MAC address that can be used to identify the
phone/tablet/laptop/whatever.
You don't have to turn the "anonymised" back to a MAC address to
de-anonymise the data.  You just encrypt a MAC address and identify
the location data in just the same manner as the tracking occurs.
Thus the location can still be re-associated with the original MAC
address.
Sure, if you know a particular MAC address and the encryption
procedure and access to the location data then you may be able (and I
note Dr B's comments in his response) to recreate the key and
therefore track the MAC address.  Most of us (and I again I bow to Dr
B) probably can't do that.
Surely the most likely people to want to do this would be criminals
anyway, so criminalising their activities seems slightly pointless.
Deterring casual peepers is probably worth doing.
Surely the problem is if this becomes widespread as eventually you'll
get enough data to identify not just the phone but the individual.
It's fine if it's kept to the tube,  but let's take the advertising
angle,  presumably the advertisers won't be satisfied with just knowing
what the busiest platform is but would prefer to target their adverts to
one or more groups of people on that platform.
By hooking up a similar system with retailers they work out that of the
group on the platform at 08:30 a significant proportion are e.g.
Waitrose shoppers.  And it then goes on and on until you end up pretty
much being able to identify the iindividual, what they buy, where they
live etc without actually ever using any personally identifiable
information.
I'm not sure of the relevant legislation but presumably the only way to
avoid this is that each entity having such a system has to have a
different algorithm (or at least key) for anonymising the MAC data so
each data set remains siloised (but would the supplier of the system
still be able to join the different datasets?)
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you "targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
'Send you' by what means?


Anna Noyd-Dryver
D A Stocks
2017-09-09 16:04:05 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Graeme Wall
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you "targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
'Send you' by what means?
Targeted ads via Facebook, Twitter, Google or any other apps on your phone
thgat have access to your location.

It's not necessary for you to have a 'phone switched on in order for you to
be tracked: Gatwick airport (a shopping mall if ever there was one) have a
system that does it all with CCTV and face recognition. It's all about
working out how long it takes people to get through the airport and the
places they visit on the way, especially for departures.

I visited a consumer technology exhibition at one of the clients I was
working at a few years ago. We were invited to stand in front of a camera
and watch on a nearby screen while a system worked our age, sex, social
class and other information, displaying the results next to our faces on the
screen. For me it was fairly close within a few seconds (certainly close
enough for targeting ads) and very accurate within a minute. I think the
other information included how we were feeling that day...

--
DAS
Graham Murray
2017-09-09 16:47:02 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by D A Stocks
I visited a consumer technology exhibition at one of the clients I was
working at a few years ago. We were invited to stand in front of a
camera and watch on a nearby screen while a system worked our age,
sex, social class and other information, displaying the results next
to our faces on the screen. For me it was fairly close within a few
seconds (certainly close enough for targeting ads) and very accurate
within a minute. I think the other information included how we were
feeling that day...
I do not know if it is a permanent exhibit, but I saw this in the
Science Museum a few months ago. It was popular with am almost permanent
queue to 'have a go'.
Graeme Wall
2017-09-09 18:12:38 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Sam Wilson
Post by Martin Coffee
Post by Sam Wilson
[snip]
[TfL] said it was talking to the Information Commissioner’s Office
about its
plans and passengers could opt out by switching their wifi off. It said
that the phone data was “de-personalised”, with nothing to identify
individuals.
The system works by using 1,070 wifi access points on the Tube network.
They pick up on a code that identifies each phone, the media access control
(MAC) address, and track them from point to point.
Each MAC address was “irreversibly” encrypted, TfL said. Prior to
encryption, a random code is added to each to ensure that the phone cannot
be identified even if the encryption could be reversed. No browsing data
was collected, meaning that emails and the internet habits of passengers
could not be shared with third parties.
[snip]
Let's face it.  Even if encrypted, you cannot anonymise a MAC
address as it is unique to each phone.
You can turn it into something that can't be (realistically) turned
back into a MAC address that can be used to identify the
phone/tablet/laptop/whatever.
You don't have to turn the "anonymised" back to a MAC address to
de-anonymise the data.  You just encrypt a MAC address and identify
the location data in just the same manner as the tracking occurs.
Thus the location can still be re-associated with the original MAC
address.
Sure, if you know a particular MAC address and the encryption
procedure and access to the location data then you may be able (and I
note Dr B's comments in his response) to recreate the key and
therefore track the MAC address.  Most of us (and I again I bow to Dr
B) probably can't do that.
Surely the most likely people to want to do this would be criminals
anyway, so criminalising their activities seems slightly pointless.
Deterring casual peepers is probably worth doing.
Surely the problem is if this becomes widespread as eventually you'll
get enough data to identify not just the phone but the individual.
It's fine if it's kept to the tube,  but let's take the advertising
angle,  presumably the advertisers won't be satisfied with just knowing
what the busiest platform is but would prefer to target their adverts to
one or more groups of people on that platform.
By hooking up a similar system with retailers they work out that of the
group on the platform at 08:30 a significant proportion are e.g.
Waitrose shoppers.  And it then goes on and on until you end up pretty
much being able to identify the iindividual, what they buy, where they
live etc without actually ever using any personally identifiable
information.
I'm not sure of the relevant legislation but presumably the only way to
avoid this is that each entity having such a system has to have a
different algorithm (or at least key) for anonymising the MAC data so
each data set remains siloised (but would the supplier of the system
still be able to join the different datasets?)
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you "targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
'Send you' by what means?
SMS initially.
--
Graeme Wall
This account not read.
Anna Noyd-Dryver
2017-09-09 19:50:54 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Someone Somewhere
I'm not sure of the relevant legislation but presumably the only way to
avoid this is that each entity having such a system has to have a
different algorithm (or at least key) for anonymising the MAC data so
each data set remains siloised (but would the supplier of the system
still be able to join the different datasets?)
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you "targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
'Send you' by what means?
SMS initially.
That'd be tricky to get from a MAC address, surely? Though as per my other
reply, other mechanisms may exist.


Anna Noyd-Dryver
Nobody
2017-09-09 23:25:48 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Sat, 9 Sep 2017 19:50:54 -0000 (UTC), Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Someone Somewhere
I'm not sure of the relevant legislation but presumably the only way to
avoid this is that each entity having such a system has to have a
different algorithm (or at least key) for anonymising the MAC data so
each data set remains siloised (but would the supplier of the system
still be able to join the different datasets?)
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you "targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
'Send you' by what means?
SMS initially.
That'd be tricky to get from a MAC address, surely? Though as per my other
reply, other mechanisms may exist.
Anna Noyd-Dryver
Gee, there are more 'Shirleys' in this thread than that non-alcoholic
drink ordered in a bar.

Must be some sort of Template.
Graeme Wall
2017-09-10 07:07:02 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Nobody
On Sat, 9 Sep 2017 19:50:54 -0000 (UTC), Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Someone Somewhere
I'm not sure of the relevant legislation but presumably the only way to
avoid this is that each entity having such a system has to have a
different algorithm (or at least key) for anonymising the MAC data so
each data set remains siloised (but would the supplier of the system
still be able to join the different datasets?)
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you "targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
'Send you' by what means?
SMS initially.
That'd be tricky to get from a MAC address, surely? Though as per my other
reply, other mechanisms may exist.
Anna Noyd-Dryver
Gee, there are more 'Shirleys' in this thread than that non-alcoholic
drink ordered in a bar.
Must be some sort of Template.
Lollipop anyone?
--
Graeme Wall
This account not read.
Someone Somewhere
2017-09-10 07:27:12 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Sam Wilson
Post by Martin Coffee
Post by Sam Wilson
[snip]
[TfL] said it was talking to the Information Commissioner’s Office
about its
plans and passengers could opt out by switching their wifi off. It said
that the phone data was “de-personalised”, with nothing to identify
individuals.
The system works by using 1,070 wifi access points on the Tube network.
They pick up on a code that identifies each phone, the media access control
(MAC) address, and track them from point to point.
Each MAC address was “irreversibly” encrypted, TfL said. Prior to
encryption, a random code is added to each to ensure that the phone cannot
be identified even if the encryption could be reversed. No browsing data
was collected, meaning that emails and the internet habits of passengers
could not be shared with third parties.
[snip]
Let's face it.  Even if encrypted, you cannot anonymise a MAC
address as it is unique to each phone.
You can turn it into something that can't be (realistically) turned
back into a MAC address that can be used to identify the
phone/tablet/laptop/whatever.
You don't have to turn the "anonymised" back to a MAC address to
de-anonymise the data.  You just encrypt a MAC address and identify
the location data in just the same manner as the tracking occurs.
Thus the location can still be re-associated with the original MAC
address.
Sure, if you know a particular MAC address and the encryption
procedure and access to the location data then you may be able (and I
note Dr B's comments in his response) to recreate the key and
therefore track the MAC address.  Most of us (and I again I bow to Dr
B) probably can't do that.
Surely the most likely people to want to do this would be criminals
anyway, so criminalising their activities seems slightly pointless.
Deterring casual peepers is probably worth doing.
Surely the problem is if this becomes widespread as eventually you'll
get enough data to identify not just the phone but the individual.
It's fine if it's kept to the tube,  but let's take the advertising
angle,  presumably the advertisers won't be satisfied with just knowing
what the busiest platform is but would prefer to target their adverts to
one or more groups of people on that platform.
By hooking up a similar system with retailers they work out that of the
group on the platform at 08:30 a significant proportion are e.g.
Waitrose shoppers.  And it then goes on and on until you end up pretty
much being able to identify the iindividual, what they buy, where they
live etc without actually ever using any personally identifiable
information.
I'm not sure of the relevant legislation but presumably the only way to
avoid this is that each entity having such a system has to have a
different algorithm (or at least key) for anonymising the MAC data so
each data set remains siloised (but would the supplier of the system
still be able to join the different datasets?)
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you "targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
'Send you' by what means?
SMS initially.
It can be SMS, it could even be electronic billboards or display
screens. Imagine walking on to a tube platform, to be greeted by a
display with an advert from Boots - "Hey Someone Somewhere - you haven't
bought Preparation H recently. If your arse grapes are still troubling
you, you'll be pleased to know that we currently have 50p off our jumbo
tube" or similar....
d***@yahoo.co.uk
2017-09-10 08:52:29 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Sun, 10 Sep 2017 08:27:12 +0100, Someone Somewhere
Post by Someone Somewhere
It can be SMS, it could even be electronic billboards or display
screens. Imagine walking on to a tube platform, to be greeted by a
display with an advert from Boots - "Hey Someone Somewhere - you haven't
bought Preparation H recently. If your arse grapes are still troubling
you, you'll be pleased to know that we currently have 50p off our jumbo
tube" or similar....
What if it is not a tube platform but a subsurface one, do they offer
an injection?

G.Harman
Roland Perry
2017-09-11 13:53:38 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Someone Somewhere
It can be SMS, it could even be electronic billboards or display
screens. Imagine walking on to a tube platform, to be greeted by a
display with an advert from Boots - "Hey Someone Somewhere - you haven't
bought Preparation H recently. If your arse grapes are still troubling
you, you'll be pleased to know that we currently have 50p off our jumbo
tube" or similar....
Of course there is always the option - possibly heresy for Millenials - to
switch off wifi on your phone. I know, its radical, but it might just work.
You've raised a *very* interesting point. This survey may be of only
that self-selecting subset of passengers who *do* keep their wifi on [on
the tube].

Does the associated article mention whether they attempted to correct
for this built-in bias?
--
Roland Perry
Someone Somewhere
2017-09-11 14:16:32 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Roland Perry
It can be SMS,  it could even be electronic billboards or display
screens.  Imagine walking on to a tube platform, to be greeted by a
display with an advert from Boots - "Hey Someone Somewhere - you haven't
bought Preparation H recently.  If your arse grapes are still troubling
you, you'll be pleased to know that we currently have 50p off our jumbo
tube" or similar....
Of course there is always the option - possibly heresy for Millenials - to
switch off wifi on your phone. I know, its radical, but it might just work.
You've raised a *very* interesting point. This survey may be of only
that self-selecting subset of passengers who *do* keep their wifi on [on
the tube].
Does the associated article mention whether they attempted to correct
for this built-in bias?
Are you presuming that there is a correlation between whether people
keep wifi on and choose particular routes? If we assume they are
independent then TfLs analysis still stands.

Presumably by analysing ticket data we can see what percentage of
passengers are carrying a device with wi-fi enabled (although in my case
that is often 3 or more - before you ask, personal phone, work phone and
kindle)
Roland Perry
2017-09-11 19:58:00 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Roland Perry
It can be SMS,  it could even be electronic billboards or display
screens.  Imagine walking on to a tube platform, to be greeted by a
display with an advert from Boots - "Hey Someone Somewhere - you haven't
bought Preparation H recently.  If your arse grapes are still troubling
you, you'll be pleased to know that we currently have 50p off our jumbo
tube" or similar....
Of course there is always the option - possibly heresy for
Millenials - to
switch off wifi on your phone. I know, its radical, but it might
just work.
You've raised a *very* interesting point. This survey may be of only
that self-selecting subset of passengers who *do* keep their wifi on
[on the tube].
Does the associated article mention whether they attempted to
correct for this built-in bias?
Are you presuming that there is a correlation between whether people
keep wifi on and choose particular routes? If we assume they are
independent then TfLs analysis still stands.
Actuall, it's worse than that, because different types of traveller
might have smartphones or not, at all. Older passengers might have fewer
phones/device, and might make decisions based more on step-free or long
term habit, than short term optimisation. Conversely, younger people in
a hurry, with more devices, might bail out to alternative less obvious
routes more impatiently.
Post by Someone Somewhere
Presumably by analysing ticket data
You might be able to make a stab by comparing the number of ticket
barrier entries/exits at a non-interchange station or two, then the
number of unique phones you detect on the platforms.
Post by Someone Somewhere
we can see what percentage of passengers are carrying a device with
wi-fi enabled (although in my case that is often 3 or more - before you
ask, personal phone, work phone and kindle)
Well, that's going to bias the results too, because you'll perhaps show
up as three trips not one. And maybe people with lots of devices are
more prone to be fussy about choosing the quickest route.
--
Roland Perry
s***@potato.field
2017-09-12 08:35:41 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Mon, 11 Sep 2017 15:16:32 +0100
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Roland Perry
Does the associated article mention whether they attempted to correct
for this built-in bias?
Are you presuming that there is a correlation between whether people
keep wifi on and choose particular routes? If we assume they are
independent then TfLs analysis still stands.
Presumably by analysing ticket data we can see what percentage of
passengers are carrying a device with wi-fi enabled (although in my case
that is often 3 or more - before you ask, personal phone, work phone and
kindle)
You have to carry a work phone? You have my sympathies. There's nothing worse
than the invisible leesh tying you to the office when its not really required
by the job (ie you're not a travelling salesman or on site engineer etc).
--
Spud
Nobody
2017-09-12 23:23:53 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by s***@potato.field
On Mon, 11 Sep 2017 15:16:32 +0100
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Roland Perry
Does the associated article mention whether they attempted to correct
for this built-in bias?
Are you presuming that there is a correlation between whether people
keep wifi on and choose particular routes? If we assume they are
independent then TfLs analysis still stands.
Presumably by analysing ticket data we can see what percentage of
passengers are carrying a device with wi-fi enabled (although in my case
that is often 3 or more - before you ask, personal phone, work phone and
kindle)
You have to carry a work phone? You have my sympathies. There's nothing worse
than the invisible leesh tying you to the office
Sheesh! My dog would tell you he's mostly on a leash.

How many spills can a spellchucker check?
s***@potato.field
2017-09-13 08:35:00 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Tue, 12 Sep 2017 16:23:53 -0700
Post by Nobody
Post by s***@potato.field
On Mon, 11 Sep 2017 15:16:32 +0100
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Roland Perry
Does the associated article mention whether they attempted to correct
for this built-in bias?
Are you presuming that there is a correlation between whether people
keep wifi on and choose particular routes? If we assume they are
independent then TfLs analysis still stands.
Presumably by analysing ticket data we can see what percentage of
passengers are carrying a device with wi-fi enabled (although in my case
that is often 3 or more - before you ask, personal phone, work phone and
kindle)
You have to carry a work phone? You have my sympathies. There's nothing worse
than the invisible leesh tying you to the office
Sheesh! My dog would tell you he's mostly on a leash.
How many spills can a spellchucker check?
You're confusing me with someone who gives a shit.
--
Spud
Someone Somewhere
2017-09-13 08:45:29 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by s***@potato.field
On Tue, 12 Sep 2017 16:23:53 -0700
Post by Nobody
Post by s***@potato.field
On Mon, 11 Sep 2017 15:16:32 +0100
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Roland Perry
Does the associated article mention whether they attempted to correct
for this built-in bias?
Are you presuming that there is a correlation between whether people
keep wifi on and choose particular routes? If we assume they are
independent then TfLs analysis still stands.
Presumably by analysing ticket data we can see what percentage of
passengers are carrying a device with wi-fi enabled (although in my case
that is often 3 or more - before you ask, personal phone, work phone and
kindle)
You have to carry a work phone? You have my sympathies. There's nothing worse
than the invisible leesh tying you to the office
Sheesh! My dog would tell you he's mostly on a leash.
How many spills can a spellchucker check?
You're confusing me with someone who gives a shit.
Well indeed, and the reason I carry a work phone is that I don't have an
office and can therefore work wherever I feel like but obviously need to
be in contact.

Graeme Wall
2017-09-11 15:46:41 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Roland Perry
It can be SMS,  it could even be electronic billboards or display
screens.  Imagine walking on to a tube platform, to be greeted by a
display with an advert from Boots - "Hey Someone Somewhere - you haven't
bought Preparation H recently.  If your arse grapes are still troubling
you, you'll be pleased to know that we currently have 50p off our jumbo
tube" or similar....
Of course there is always the option - possibly heresy for Millenials - to
switch off wifi on your phone. I know, its radical, but it might just work.
You've raised a *very* interesting point. This survey may be of only
that self-selecting subset of passengers who *do* keep their wifi on [on
the tube].
Which will be most, how many people actually bother switching it on and off?
Post by Roland Perry
Does the associated article mention whether they attempted to correct
for this built-in bias?
In the noise.
--
Graeme Wall
This account not read.
Roland Perry
2017-09-11 19:50:37 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Roland Perry
You've raised a *very* interesting point. This survey may be of only
that self-selecting subset of passengers who *do* keep their wifi on
[on the tube].
Which will be most, how many people actually bother switching it on and off?
Who knows? Different demographics perhaps, which is the whole point.

I switch my wifi off whenever out and about because it's too patchy to
warrant the battery consumption.
--
Roland Perry
Anna Noyd-Dryver
2017-09-12 04:57:17 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by d***@yahoo.co.uk
On Sun, 10 Sep 2017 08:27:12 +0100
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Graeme Wall
SMS initially.
It can be SMS, it could even be electronic billboards or display
screens. Imagine walking on to a tube platform, to be greeted by a
display with an advert from Boots - "Hey Someone Somewhere - you haven't
bought Preparation H recently. If your arse grapes are still troubling
you, you'll be pleased to know that we currently have 50p off our jumbo
tube" or similar....
Of course there is always the option - possibly heresy for Millenials - to
switch off wifi on your phone. I know, its radical, but it might just work.
I usually forget to switch it back on and end up using my 4G allowance at
home...


Anna Noyd-Dryver
Roland Perry
2017-09-12 07:33:13 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Of course there is always the option - possibly heresy for Millenials - to
switch off wifi on your phone. I know, its radical, but it might just work.
I usually forget to switch it back on and end up using my 4G allowance at
home...
My Android phone uses wifi in preference to mobile data, when wifi is
available.
--
Roland Perry
Anna Noyd-Dryver
2017-09-12 07:52:38 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Roland Perry
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Of course there is always the option - possibly heresy for Millenials - to
switch off wifi on your phone. I know, its radical, but it might just work.
I usually forget to switch it back on and end up using my 4G allowance at
home...
My Android phone uses wifi in preference to mobile data, when wifi is
available.
Assuming wifi is switched on, of course.


Anna Noyd-Dryver
s***@potato.field
2017-09-12 08:30:06 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Tue, 12 Sep 2017 04:57:17 -0000 (UTC)
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by d***@yahoo.co.uk
On Sun, 10 Sep 2017 08:27:12 +0100
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Graeme Wall
SMS initially.
It can be SMS, it could even be electronic billboards or display
screens. Imagine walking on to a tube platform, to be greeted by a
display with an advert from Boots - "Hey Someone Somewhere - you haven't
bought Preparation H recently. If your arse grapes are still troubling
you, you'll be pleased to know that we currently have 50p off our jumbo
tube" or similar....
Of course there is always the option - possibly heresy for Millenials - to
switch off wifi on your phone. I know, its radical, but it might just work.
I usually forget to switch it back on and end up using my 4G allowance at
home...
Why would anyone use a phone at home when there are alternatives with proper
screens and keyboards, virtual or otherwise, not designed for fingers the size
of those of a 5 year old?
--
Spud
Anna Noyd-Dryver
2017-09-12 11:22:51 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by s***@potato.field
On Tue, 12 Sep 2017 04:57:17 -0000 (UTC)
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by d***@yahoo.co.uk
On Sun, 10 Sep 2017 08:27:12 +0100
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Graeme Wall
SMS initially.
It can be SMS, it could even be electronic billboards or display
screens. Imagine walking on to a tube platform, to be greeted by a
display with an advert from Boots - "Hey Someone Somewhere - you haven't
bought Preparation H recently. If your arse grapes are still troubling
you, you'll be pleased to know that we currently have 50p off our jumbo
tube" or similar....
Of course there is always the option - possibly heresy for Millenials - to
switch off wifi on your phone. I know, its radical, but it might just work.
I usually forget to switch it back on and end up using my 4G allowance at
home...
Why would anyone use a phone at home when there are alternatives with proper
screens and keyboards, virtual or otherwise, not designed for fingers the size
of those of a 5 year old?
Why change environment when you're used to reading fb, usenet, text,
WhatsApp etc on your phone all day? Not tied to one room, use it in
kitchen, lounge, bedroom, bathroom, garden etc. In any case my laptop and
desktop are both so slow that they really need replacing - but I use them
so little that it's not really worth replacing them...


Anna Noyd-Dryver
s***@potato.field
2017-09-12 13:19:24 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Tue, 12 Sep 2017 11:22:51 -0000 (UTC)
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by s***@potato.field
Why would anyone use a phone at home when there are alternatives with proper
screens and keyboards, virtual or otherwise, not designed for fingers the
size
Post by s***@potato.field
of those of a 5 year old?
Why change environment when you're used to reading fb, usenet, text,
WhatsApp etc on your phone all day? Not tied to one room, use it in
Thats a bit like saying why bother switching to a 32 inch TV in the evening
if you've been watching stuff on a 4 inch one all day.
--
Spud
Anna Noyd-Dryver
2017-09-13 07:36:29 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by s***@potato.field
On Tue, 12 Sep 2017 11:22:51 -0000 (UTC)
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by s***@potato.field
Why would anyone use a phone at home when there are alternatives with proper
screens and keyboards, virtual or otherwise, not designed for fingers the
size
Post by s***@potato.field
of those of a 5 year old?
Why change environment when you're used to reading fb, usenet, text,
WhatsApp etc on your phone all day? Not tied to one room, use it in
Thats a bit like saying why bother switching to a 32 inch TV in the evening
if you've been watching stuff on a 4 inch one all day.
Can't browse fb/usenet on my desktop while I'm watching that 32" TV, though
;)


Anna Noyd-Dryver
ColinR
2017-09-12 19:03:55 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by s***@potato.field
On Tue, 12 Sep 2017 04:57:17 -0000 (UTC)
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by d***@yahoo.co.uk
On Sun, 10 Sep 2017 08:27:12 +0100
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Graeme Wall
SMS initially.
It can be SMS, it could even be electronic billboards or display
screens. Imagine walking on to a tube platform, to be greeted by a
display with an advert from Boots - "Hey Someone Somewhere - you haven't
bought Preparation H recently. If your arse grapes are still troubling
you, you'll be pleased to know that we currently have 50p off our jumbo
tube" or similar....
Of course there is always the option - possibly heresy for Millenials - to
switch off wifi on your phone. I know, its radical, but it might just work.
I usually forget to switch it back on and end up using my 4G allowance at
home...
Why would anyone use a phone at home when there are alternatives with proper
screens and keyboards, virtual or otherwise, not designed for fingers the size
of those of a 5 year old?
I fell foul of this, switched off wi-fi and the phone used all my data
allowance when the software / apps updated - should have been free over
wi-fi but ....

Lesson learned!
--
Colin
Sam Wilson
2017-09-11 09:18:37 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Someone Somewhere
Post by Sam Wilson
Post by Martin Coffee
Post by Sam Wilson
[snip]
[TfL] said it was talking to the Information Commissioner’s Office about its
plans and passengers could opt out by switching their wifi off. It said
that the phone data was “de-personalised”, with nothing to identify
individuals.
The system works by using 1,070 wifi access points on the Tube network.
They pick up on a code that identifies each phone, the media access control
(MAC) address, and track them from point to point.
Each MAC address was “irreversibly” encrypted, TfL said. Prior to
encryption, a random code is added to each to ensure that the phone cannot
be identified even if the encryption could be reversed. No browsing data
was collected, meaning that emails and the internet habits of passengers
could not be shared with third parties.
[snip]
Let's face it.  Even if encrypted, you cannot anonymise a MAC address
as it is unique to each phone.
You can turn it into something that can't be (realistically) turned
back into a MAC address that can be used to identify the
phone/tablet/laptop/whatever.
You don't have to turn the "anonymised" back to a MAC address to
de-anonymise the data.  You just encrypt a MAC address and identify the
location data in just the same manner as the tracking occurs. Thus the
location can still be re-associated with the original MAC address.
Sure, if you know a particular MAC address and the encryption procedure
and access to the location data then you may be able (and I note Dr B's
comments in his response) to recreate the key and therefore track the
MAC address.  Most of us (and I again I bow to Dr B) probably can't do
that.
Surely the most likely people to want to do this would be criminals
anyway, so criminalising their activities seems slightly pointless.
Deterring casual peepers is probably worth doing.
Surely the problem is if this becomes widespread as eventually you'll
get enough data to identify not just the phone but the individual.
It's fine if it's kept to the tube,  but let's take the advertising
angle,  presumably the advertisers won't be satisfied with just knowing
what the busiest platform is but would prefer to target their adverts
to one or more groups of people on that platform.
By hooking up a similar system with retailers they work out that of the
group on the platform at 08:30 a significant proportion are e.g.
Waitrose shoppers.  And it then goes on and on until you end up pretty
much being able to identify the iindividual, what they buy, where they
live etc without actually ever using any personally identifiable
information.
I'm not sure of the relevant legislation but presumably the only way to
avoid this is that each entity having such a system has to have a
different algorithm (or at least key) for anonymising the MAC data so
each data set remains siloised (but would the supplier of the system
still be able to join the different datasets?)
Shopping malls have been doing a similar thing to send you "targetted
adverts" as you approach various shops.
Hello Mr Yakamoto, welcome back to GAP...

Sam
--
The University of Edinburgh is a charitable body, registered in
Scotland, with registration number SC005336.
Roland Perry
2017-09-08 13:36:48 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
The data showed that even within stations a third of passengers did not
use the quickest routes between platforms and could be wasting up to
two minutes.
Assisted, no doubt, by TfL signage which frequently points to
non-optimum routes on account of fearing overloading of the optimum
route.
--
Roland Perry
r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
2017-09-08 20:32:01 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Roland Perry
The data showed that even within stations a third of passengers did not
use the quickest routes between platforms and could be wasting up to
two minutes.
Assisted, no doubt, by TfL signage which frequently points to
non-optimum routes on account of fearing overloading of the optimum
route.
Yes, choosing King's Cross is unfortunate as passengers are deliberately
directed a very long way round to get to the tube platforms there,
especially from the main line to the Victoria Line.
--
Colin Rosenstiel
Clive Page
2017-09-09 18:14:28 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
The data showed that even within stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
Assisted, no doubt, by TfL signage which frequently points to non-optimum routes on account of fearing overloading of the optimum route.
I have often made journeys between Waterloo and King's Cross and though I mostly use their supposedly optimum route, have one time or another used at least half-a-dozen of the other routes. The reason is usually that one hears about problems on one or more lines or stations and so diverts to an alternative which is nearly as good. It may be that TfL have only analysed data when they think that services are good on their optimum route, but customers may have other information, possibly more or less accurate than that of TfL, which persuades them to divert.
--
Clive Page
Graeme Wall
2017-09-08 15:07:44 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to tackle
overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.
Transport for London (TfL) followed 5.6 million phones over four weeks
before Christmas via wifi in stations and is assessing how to develop the
monitoring system. The trial identified pinch-points in stations,
overcrowding on platforms and favoured routes around the network.
Controversially, the system could be used to sell advertising, with
companies charged more to buy space on platforms where travellers spend the
longest time.
Anonymised phone data is seen as a far more accurate way to track journeys
than entry and exit logs at barriers.
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the two
by tube.
--
Graeme Wall
This account not read.
Roland Perry
2017-09-08 15:21:18 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Recliner
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers
used 18 routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo,
the busiest stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who
were tracked failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed
that even within stations a third of passengers did not use the
quickest routes between platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the
two by tube.
Did you include Mornington Crescent? (Reverse at Camden Town.)
--
Roland Perry
Graeme Wall
2017-09-09 09:23:36 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Roland Perry
Post by Graeme Wall
 An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers
used 18  routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo,
the busiest  stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who
were tracked  failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed
that even within  stations a third of passengers did not use the
quickest routes between  platforms and could be wasting up to two
minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the
two by tube.
Did you include Mornington Crescent? (Reverse at Camden Town.)
But, traditionally, invoking Mornington Crescent ends the journey.
--
Graeme Wall
This account not read.
Roland Perry
2017-09-09 09:41:59 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Roland Perry
Post by Graeme Wall
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the
two by tube.
Did you include Mornington Crescent? (Reverse at Camden Town.)
But, traditionally, invoking Mornington Crescent ends the journey.
Or in this case ends the game of trying to think of more odd routes.
--
Roland Perry
Graeme Wall
2017-09-09 09:48:44 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Roland Perry
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Graeme Wall
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the
two by tube.
 Did you include Mornington Crescent? (Reverse at Camden Town.)
But, traditionally, invoking Mornington Crescent ends the journey.
Or in this case ends the game of trying to think of more odd routes.
Is this where I quote G K Chesterton?
--
Graeme Wall
This account not read.
Basil Jet
2017-09-09 17:58:38 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Roland Perry
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Graeme Wall
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between
the two by tube.
 Did you include Mornington Crescent? (Reverse at Camden Town.)
But, traditionally, invoking Mornington Crescent ends the journey.
Or in this case ends the game of trying to think of more odd routes.
Is this where I quote G K Chesterton?
Only if you want us to know what the hell you're talking about ;-)
Graeme Wall
2017-09-09 21:03:44 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Basil Jet
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Roland Perry
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Graeme Wall
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between
the two by tube.
 Did you include Mornington Crescent? (Reverse at Camden Town.)
But, traditionally, invoking Mornington Crescent ends the journey.
Or in this case ends the game of trying to think of more odd routes.
Is this where I quote G K Chesterton?
Only if you want us to know what the hell you're talking about ;-)
Chesterton's poem, The Rolling English Road:

Before the Roman came to Rye or out to Severn strode,
The rolling English drunkard made the rolling English road.
A reeling road, a rolling road, that rambles round the shire,
And after him the parson ran, the sexton and the squire;
A merry road, a mazy road, and such as we did tread
*The night we went to Birmingham by way of Beachy Head.*

I knew no harm of Bonaparte and plenty of the Squire,
And for to fight the Frenchman I did not much desire;
But I did bash their baggonets because they came arrayed
To straighten out the crooked road an English drunkard made,
Where you and I went down the lane with ale-mugs in our hands,
The night we went to Glastonbury by way of Goodwin Sands.

His sins they were forgiven him; or why do flowers run
Behind him; and the hedges all strengthening in the sun?
The wild thing went from left to right and knew not which was which,
But the wild rose was above him when they found him in the ditch.
God pardon us, nor harden us; we did not see so clear
The night we went to Bannockburn by way of Brighton Pier.

My friends, we will not go again or ape an ancient rage,
Or stretch the folly of our youth to be the shame of age,
But walk with clearer eyes and ears this path that wandereth,
And see undrugged in evening light the decent inn of death;
For there is good news yet to hear and fine things to be seen,
Before we go to Paradise by way of Kensal Green
--
Graeme Wall
This account not read.
Basil Jet
2017-09-08 15:50:26 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the two
by tube.
Two Tubes:
Kennington
Elephant (via Northern)
Oxford Circus (presumably the fastest)
Leicester Sq
Piccadilly Circ
Green Pk via Picc
Green Pk via Vic
Euston via Vic
Euston via City Branch
Euston Sq -> Warren Street
Great Portland Street -> Regents Park
Baker Street via Bakerloo
Baker Street via Jubilee
Bank
London Bridge via Jubilee
Camden Town (admittedly takes you though Euston twice, but there is less
walking at Camden Town)
Monument
Stockwell
Westminster via Circle
Embankment via Circle

One Tube + one NR:
Elephant (via Thameslink)
London Bridge via Southeastern
Vauxhall
Kentish Town via Thameslink
West Hampstead via Thameslink

Some of these are rather circuitous, but when the network is screwed in
various ways most of these could become a reasonable route.
Basil Jet
2017-09-08 18:50:48 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Basil Jet
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the
two by tube.
Kennington
Elephant (via Northern)
Oxford Circus (presumably the fastest)
Leicester Sq
Piccadilly Circ
Green Pk via Picc
Green Pk via Vic
Euston via Vic
Euston via City Branch
Euston Sq -> Warren Street
Great Portland Street -> Regents Park
Baker Street via Bakerloo
Baker Street via Jubilee
Bank
London Bridge via Jubilee
Camden Town (admittedly takes you though Euston twice, but there is less
walking at Camden Town)
Monument
Stockwell
Westminster via Circle
Embankment via Circle
Elephant (via Thameslink)
London Bridge via Southeastern
Vauxhall
Kentish Town via Thameslink
West Hampstead via Thameslink
Some of these are rather circuitous, but when the network is screwed in
various ways most of these could become a reasonable route.
Also Warren Street via Vic
And there are two lines from Embankment to Waterloo.
Graham Murray
2017-09-09 07:11:05 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Basil Jet
And there are two lines from Embankment to Waterloo.
At one time it would often have been quicker between Waterloo and
Embankment to walk over Hungerford Bridge. Though now that Hungerford
Bridge has been replaced by the Golden Jubilee Bridges, there is no
longer a direct walkway between them and Waterloo station.
Michael R N Dolbear
2017-09-09 08:12:57 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graham Murray
Post by Basil Jet
And there are two lines from Embankment to Waterloo.
At one time it would often have been quicker between Waterloo and
Embankment to walk over Hungerford Bridge. Though now that Hungerford
Bridge has been replaced by the Golden Jubilee Bridges, there is no
longer a direct walkway between them and Waterloo station.

The walkway, or rather its continuity, was broken long before the Golden
Jubilee Bridges were built.
--
Mike D
r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
2017-09-09 18:49:16 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Michael R N Dolbear
Post by Graham Murray
Post by Basil Jet
And there are two lines from Embankment to Waterloo.
At one time it would often have been quicker between Waterloo and
Embankment to walk over Hungerford Bridge. Though now that Hungerford
Bridge has been replaced by the Golden Jubilee Bridges, there is no
longer a direct walkway between them and Waterloo station.
The walkway, or rather its continuity, was broken long before the
Golden Jubilee Bridges were built.
Indeed. I was but a child and right miffed I was too.
--
Colin Rosenstiel
David Walters
2017-09-08 15:55:43 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to tackle
overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.
Transport for London (TfL) followed 5.6 million phones over four weeks
before Christmas via wifi in stations and is assessing how to develop the
monitoring system. The trial identified pinch-points in stations,
overcrowding on platforms and favoured routes around the network.
Controversially, the system could be used to sell advertising, with
companies charged more to buy space on platforms where travellers spend the
longest time.
Anonymised phone data is seen as a far more accurate way to track journeys
than entry and exit logs at barriers.
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the two
by tube.
http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-everything-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/
has an extract of the report showing 18 diagrams. It's really 17 routes
and 'others'.

Waterloo -> London Bridge -> Bank -> Liverpool Street -> King's Cross
is an interesting route choice.
Roland Perry
2017-09-08 16:17:13 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by David Walters
http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-everything-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/
has an extract of the report showing 18 diagrams. It's really 17 routes
and 'others'.
Interesting that 10x as many going via Baker St use the Bakerloo rather
than the Jubilee. Perceptions of the platform-concourse distances at
Waterloo, perhaps.

Also, did they redact trips made during moderate-serious disruption?
--
Roland Perry
r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
2017-09-08 20:32:01 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by David Walters
http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-ever
ything-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/
Post by David Walters
Post by David Walters
has an extract of the report showing 18 diagrams. It's really 17 routes
and 'others'.
Interesting that 10x as many going via Baker St use the Bakerloo
rather than the Jubilee. Perceptions of the platform-concourse
distances at Waterloo, perhaps.
Also, did they redact trips made during moderate-serious disruption?
I assume not. So that may explain some of the wackier choices.
--
Colin Rosenstiel
Mark Goodge
2017-09-09 18:08:18 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Roland Perry
Post by David Walters
http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-everything-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/
has an extract of the report showing 18 diagrams. It's really 17 routes
and 'others'.
Interesting that 10x as many going via Baker St use the Bakerloo rather
than the Jubilee. Perceptions of the platform-concourse distances at
Waterloo, perhaps.
Also, did they redact trips made during moderate-serious disruption?
No, because that was part of the point - to see how disruption affects
people's travel patterns.

The Gizmodo article goes into a lot more detail than the various
newspaper reports, and answers many of the questions posed in this
thread :-)

Mark
Martin Coffee
2017-09-08 16:30:48 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by David Walters
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to tackle
overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.
Transport for London (TfL) followed 5.6 million phones over four weeks
before Christmas via wifi in stations and is assessing how to develop the
monitoring system. The trial identified pinch-points in stations,
overcrowding on platforms and favoured routes around the network.
Controversially, the system could be used to sell advertising, with
companies charged more to buy space on platforms where travellers spend the
longest time.
Anonymised phone data is seen as a far more accurate way to track journeys
than entry and exit logs at barriers.
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the two
by tube.
http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-everything-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/
has an extract of the report showing 18 diagrams. It's really 17 routes
and 'others'.
Waterloo -> London Bridge -> Bank -> Liverpool Street -> King's Cross
is an interesting route choice.
Figure 3 makes it quite obvious that it quite possible to de anonymise
the data given an individual MAC address.
r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
2017-09-08 20:32:00 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Fri, 8 Sep 2017 16:07:44 +0100, Graeme Wall
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-
via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd495
07b8be3071>
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Recliner
Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to
tackle overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.
Transport for London (TfL) followed 5.6 million phones over four weeks
before Christmas via wifi in stations and is assessing how to develop
the monitoring system. The trial identified pinch-points in stations,
overcrowding on platforms and favoured routes around the network.
Controversially, the system could be used to sell advertising, with
companies charged more to buy space on platforms where travellers spend
the longest time.
Anonymised phone data is seen as a far more accurate way to track
journeys than entry and exit logs at barriers.
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used
18 routes to go between King_s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the
busiest stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were
tracked failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that
even within stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest
routes between platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between
the two by tube.
http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-every
thing-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/
has an extract of the report showing 18 diagrams. It's really 17 routes
and 'others'.
Waterloo -> London Bridge -> Bank -> Liverpool Street -> King's Cross
is an interesting route choice.
Only used by 0.1% of punters. Not as wacky as the one involving 3 changes
with a surprising number of takers (1.2%): King's Cross -> Baker St -> Green
Park -> Waterloo.

Older readers may remember the "Follow the lights" signage between major
central London tube stations. They were fairly small cubes with different
colours for different destinations and would presumably have told people to
go via Oxford Circus because of the same level interchange there. It's what
I'll do next Friday. Anyone remember when they were removed?
--
Colin Rosenstiel
Mark Goodge
2017-09-09 18:03:49 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Fri, 8 Sep 2017 16:07:44 +0100, Graeme Wall
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Recliner
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the two
by tube.
The Gizmodo article (which is far more detailed than the newspaper
reports) includes a diagram.

http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-everything-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/

And it's not actually 18 different ways. It's 17 different ways that,
individually, have at least 0.1% of the journey traffic, plus
"others".

Mark
h***@yahoo.co.uk
2017-09-09 18:13:22 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Fri, 8 Sep 2017 16:07:44 +0100, Graeme Wall
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Recliner
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the two
by tube.
The Gizmodo article (which is far more detailed than the newspaper
reports) includes a diagram.
http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-everything-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/
And it's not actually 18 different ways. It's 17 different ways that,
individually, have at least 0.1% of the journey traffic, plus
"others".
Mark
Does not Oyster and Contactless help to determine passenger routes and
flows? Isn't that the reason why TfL introduced it?
Anna Noyd-Dryver
2017-09-09 19:50:56 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
On Fri, 8 Sep 2017 16:07:44 +0100, Graeme Wall
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Recliner
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the two
by tube.
The Gizmodo article (which is far more detailed than the newspaper
reports) includes a diagram.
http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-everything-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/
And it's not actually 18 different ways. It's 17 different ways that,
individually, have at least 0.1% of the journey traffic, plus
"others".
Mark
Does not Oyster and Contactless help to determine passenger routes and
flows? Isn't that the reason why TfL introduced it?
Only at point of entry and exit; not the route taken between them.


Anna Noyd-Dryver
h***@yahoo.co.uk
2017-09-10 00:06:16 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
On Fri, 8 Sep 2017 16:07:44 +0100, Graeme Wall
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Recliner
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the two
by tube.
The Gizmodo article (which is far more detailed than the newspaper
reports) includes a diagram.
http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-everything-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/
And it's not actually 18 different ways. It's 17 different ways that,
individually, have at least 0.1% of the journey traffic, plus
"others".
Mark
Does not Oyster and Contactless help to determine passenger routes and
flows? Isn't that the reason why TfL introduced it?
Only at point of entry and exit; not the route taken between them.
Anna Noyd-Dryver
Noted.
Charles Ellson
2017-09-10 18:56:55 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
On Fri, 8 Sep 2017 16:07:44 +0100, Graeme Wall
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Recliner
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the two
by tube.
The Gizmodo article (which is far more detailed than the newspaper
reports) includes a diagram.
http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-everything-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/
And it's not actually 18 different ways. It's 17 different ways that,
individually, have at least 0.1% of the journey traffic, plus
"others".
Mark
Does not Oyster and Contactless help to determine passenger routes and
flows? Isn't that the reason why TfL introduced it?
Only at point of entry and exit; not the route taken between them.
Anna Noyd-Dryver
Noted.
Determining the route typically requires the use of pink card readers
somewhere along the non-London route for users to touch so that a
reduced fare is charged.
https://tfl.gov.uk/fares-and-payments/oyster/using-oyster/pink-card-readers
They often aren't actually necessary if the default route is the
cheaper choice but it is presumably easier just to tell people to
touch as they pass.
Graeme Wall
2017-09-09 21:07:40 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
On Fri, 8 Sep 2017 16:07:44 +0100, Graeme Wall
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Recliner
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the two
by tube.
The Gizmodo article (which is far more detailed than the newspaper
reports) includes a diagram.
http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-everything-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/
And it's not actually 18 different ways. It's 17 different ways that,
individually, have at least 0.1% of the journey traffic, plus
"others".
Mark
Does not Oyster and Contactless help to determine passenger routes and
flows? Isn't that the reason why TfL introduced it?
As the article points out, it doesn't track you through the system, just
the in and out points. The wifi data can follow you from platform to
platform.
--
Graeme Wall
This account not read.
Charles Ellson
2017-09-09 23:46:20 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Sat, 9 Sep 2017 22:07:40 +0100, Graeme Wall
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
On Fri, 8 Sep 2017 16:07:44 +0100, Graeme Wall
Post by Graeme Wall
Post by Recliner
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
I'm still trying to work out 18 different ways to travel between the two
by tube.
The Gizmodo article (which is far more detailed than the newspaper
reports) includes a diagram.
http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-everything-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/
And it's not actually 18 different ways. It's 17 different ways that,
individually, have at least 0.1% of the journey traffic, plus
"others".
Mark
Does not Oyster and Contactless help to determine passenger routes and
flows? Isn't that the reason why TfL introduced it?
As the article points out, it doesn't track you through the system, just
the in and out points. The wifi data can follow you from platform to
platform.
Where the WiFi is operative. It quite clearly isn't at e.g. some
Jubilee Line stations or sections thereof.
r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
2017-09-09 21:29:10 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
Does not Oyster and Contactless help to determine passenger routes
and flows? Isn't that the reason why TfL introduced it?
Only up to a point. Oyster tells TfL about journeys from King's Cross to
Waterloo but not which of more than 17 possible routes people took.
--
Colin Rosenstiel
Roland Perry
2017-09-09 20:20:05 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
Does not Oyster and Contactless help to determine passenger routes and
flows? Isn't that the reason why TfL introduced it?
It gives the end points, but rarely the route between.
--
Roland Perry
Basil Jet
2017-09-08 15:19:05 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to tackle
overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.
Transport for London (TfL) followed 5.6 million phones over four weeks
before Christmas via wifi in stations and is assessing how to develop the
monitoring system. The trial identified pinch-points in stations,
overcrowding on platforms and favoured routes around the network.
Controversially, the system could be used to sell advertising, with
companies charged more to buy space on platforms where travellers spend the
longest time.
How is that controversial!
Roland Perry
2017-09-08 15:30:09 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Basil Jet
Post by Recliner
Controversially, the system could be used to sell advertising, with
companies charged more to buy space on platforms where travellers spend the
longest time.
How is that controversial!
With the advertisers, who are bound to end up paying more in total.
That's the whole point!
--
Roland Perry
j***@nospam.com.au
2017-09-08 22:43:39 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to tackle
overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.
Transport for London (TfL) followed 5.6 million phones over four weeks
before Christmas via wifi in stations and is assessing how to develop the
monitoring system. The trial identified pinch-points in stations,
overcrowding on platforms and favoured routes around the network.
Controversially, the system could be used to sell advertising, with
companies charged more to buy space on platforms where travellers spend the
longest time.
Anonymised phone data is seen as a far more accurate way to track journeys
than entry and exit logs at barriers.
An evaluation of the trial, published today, shows that passengers used 18
routes to go between King’s Cross/St Pancras and Waterloo, the busiest
stations on the network, with 40 per cent of people who were tracked
failing to take the two fastest routes. The data showed that even within
stations a third of passengers did not use the quickest routes between
platforms and could be wasting up to two minutes.
Transport for London is assessing how best to employ the system in the
future and admitted yesterday that it could be used to track passenger
movements in “real time”.
It said it was talking to the Information Commissioner’s Office about its
plans and passengers could opt out by switching their wifi off. It said
that the phone data was “de-personalised”, with nothing to identify
individuals.
The system works by using 1,070 wifi access points on the Tube network.
They pick up on a code that identifies each phone, the media access control
(MAC) address, and track them from point to point.
Each MAC address was “irreversibly” encrypted, TfL said. Prior to
encryption, a random code is added to each to ensure that the phone cannot
be identified even if the encryption could be reversed. No browsing data
was collected, meaning that emails and the internet habits of passengers
could not be shared with third parties.
Privacy campaigners expressed concern over the technology. Renate Samson,
chief executive of Big Brother Watch, said: “Analysing movements of people
via their device may provide unique analytical benefits but is still a
process of tracking and monitoring as they go about their daily business.
It is critical that the public are completely clear on what is being done,
when, how and why, and how they can opt out.”
TfL, which handles up to 4.8 million journeys a day, spent £100,000 testing
the technology in 54 stations.
Val Shawcross, deputy mayor for transport, said: “The analysis of secure,
de-personalised wifi data could enable us to map the journey patterns of
millions of passengers and understand in much greater detail how people
move around our transport network. It will provide real benefits, helping
TfL tackle overcrowding, provide more information for passengers about
their best route and help prioritise investment.”
Malthus and Orwell were spot on!
Guy Gorton
2017-09-09 07:55:05 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Fri, 08 Sep 2017 13:03:37 GMT, Recliner
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to tackle
overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.
Fascinating selection of routes, some of which could be accounted for
by friends/relatives travelling together with different destinations
but on the same general route.

But why do people let the world know where they are? Not using the
device is not enough, It has to be switched off to avoid tracking.
Mine is only switched on when I am willing to accept calls or need to
make a call. That only amounts to a small proportion of my waking
hours so it is more often off than on..

Guy Gorton
Anna Noyd-Dryver
2017-09-09 10:42:33 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Guy Gorton
But why do people let the world know where they are? Not using the
device is not enough, It has to be switched off to avoid tracking.
Mine is only switched on when I am willing to accept calls or need to
make a call. That only amounts to a small proportion of my waking
hours so it is more often off than on..
My phone OTOH is always on except when it has to be off, eg whilst driving
a train. I rarely make calls and even more rarely answer incoming calls.
When travelling by tube I often read usenet, as it's an offline thing,
whereas trying to read Facebook or anything web or forum based is difficult
with just seconds of wifi at every station stop.


Anna Noyd-Dryver
h***@yahoo.co.uk
2017-09-09 13:56:31 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Guy Gorton
But why do people let the world know where they are? Not using the
device is not enough, It has to be switched off to avoid tracking.
Mine is only switched on when I am willing to accept calls or need to
make a call. That only amounts to a small proportion of my waking
hours so it is more often off than on..
My phone OTOH is always on except when it has to be off, eg whilst driving
a train.
Do drivers have to completely switch off their mobiles when at work? Or
can you simply put them on silent or airplane mode?
Anna Noyd-Dryver
2017-09-09 14:53:12 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Guy Gorton
But why do people let the world know where they are? Not using the
device is not enough, It has to be switched off to avoid tracking.
Mine is only switched on when I am willing to accept calls or need to
make a call. That only amounts to a small proportion of my waking
hours so it is more often off than on..
My phone OTOH is always on except when it has to be off, eg whilst driving
a train.
Do drivers have to completely switch off their mobiles when at work? Or
can you simply put them on silent or airplane mode?
Off in the cab. Apparently we can't be trusted with airline mode etc ;) .
Theoretically off when changing ends etc too as we're still in charge of
the train, though that's widely ignored.

Work-issue tablet must be airline and silent (and 'stowed' in bag!) when
the train is in motion but can be used when the train is stopped, to access
certain functions only (train running info, live track maps, route maps,
traction manuals etc). Assessors may use the assessing app, and trainees
may used route maps, when the train is in motion.


Anna Noyd-Dryver
Mark Goodge
2017-09-10 10:22:32 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Sat, 9 Sep 2017 14:53:12 -0000 (UTC), Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Guy Gorton
But why do people let the world know where they are? Not using the
device is not enough, It has to be switched off to avoid tracking.
Mine is only switched on when I am willing to accept calls or need to
make a call. That only amounts to a small proportion of my waking
hours so it is more often off than on..
My phone OTOH is always on except when it has to be off, eg whilst driving
a train.
Do drivers have to completely switch off their mobiles when at work? Or
can you simply put them on silent or airplane mode?
Off in the cab. Apparently we can't be trusted with airline mode etc ;) .
Well, you might still be playing Angry Birds :-)

Mark
Anna Noyd-Dryver
2017-09-10 12:02:46 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Mark Goodge
On Sat, 9 Sep 2017 14:53:12 -0000 (UTC), Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Guy Gorton
But why do people let the world know where they are? Not using the
device is not enough, It has to be switched off to avoid tracking.
Mine is only switched on when I am willing to accept calls or need to
make a call. That only amounts to a small proportion of my waking
hours so it is more often off than on..
My phone OTOH is always on except when it has to be off, eg whilst driving
a train.
Do drivers have to completely switch off their mobiles when at work? Or
can you simply put them on silent or airplane mode?
Off in the cab. Apparently we can't be trusted with airline mode etc ;) .
Well, you might still be playing Angry Birds :-)
In recent months I've played (and got bored with) a few railway-themed
games (though not while driving!) - I wonder how many railway-themed game
apps there are!


Anna Noyd-Dryver
ColinR
2017-09-10 15:22:45 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Mark Goodge
On Sat, 9 Sep 2017 14:53:12 -0000 (UTC), Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Guy Gorton
But why do people let the world know where they are? Not using the
device is not enough, It has to be switched off to avoid tracking.
Mine is only switched on when I am willing to accept calls or need to
make a call. That only amounts to a small proportion of my waking
hours so it is more often off than on..
My phone OTOH is always on except when it has to be off, eg whilst driving
a train.
Do drivers have to completely switch off their mobiles when at work? Or
can you simply put them on silent or airplane mode?
Off in the cab. Apparently we can't be trusted with airline mode etc ;) .
Well, you might still be playing Angry Birds :-)
In recent months I've played (and got bored with) a few railway-themed
games (though not while driving!) - I wonder how many railway-themed game
apps there are!
Anna Noyd-Dryver
Whilst not as an app, SIAM have railway simulations - mostly based on
DOS. Very good as well if you like that sort of thing.
--
Colin
r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
2017-09-10 22:47:48 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by ColinR
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
In recent months I've played (and got bored with) a few railway-themed
games (though not while driving!) - I wonder how many railway-themed
game apps there are!
Whilst not as an app, SIAM have railway simulations - mostly based on
DOS. Very good as well if you like that sort of thing.
Why would a train driver in RL want to run railway simulations when they
have real trains to run?
--
Colin Rosenstiel
Anna Noyd-Dryver
2017-09-11 03:23:52 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by ColinR
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Mark Goodge
On Sat, 9 Sep 2017 14:53:12 -0000 (UTC), Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
Post by Anna Noyd-Dryver
Post by Guy Gorton
But why do people let the world know where they are? Not using the
device is not enough, It has to be switched off to avoid tracking.
Mine is only switched on when I am willing to accept calls or need to
make a call. That only amounts to a small proportion of my waking
hours so it is more often off than on..
My phone OTOH is always on except when it has to be off, eg whilst driving
a train.
Do drivers have to completely switch off their mobiles when at work? Or
can you simply put them on silent or airplane mode?
Off in the cab. Apparently we can't be trusted with airline mode etc ;) .
Well, you might still be playing Angry Birds :-)
In recent months I've played (and got bored with) a few railway-themed
games (though not while driving!) - I wonder how many railway-themed game
apps there are!
Whilst not as an app, SIAM have railway simulations - mostly based on
DOS. Very good as well if you like that sort of thing.
That won't work to pass the time on my iPhone then ;)

I used to have some SIAM games many years ago - presumably they're still on
one of the old hard drives stacked on the shelf 'to be sorted through'.


Anna Noyd-Dryver
r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
2017-09-09 18:49:16 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Guy Gorton
On Fri, 08 Sep 2017 13:03:37 GMT, Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters
-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49
507b8be3071>
Post by Guy Gorton
Post by Recliner
Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to
tackle overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.
Fascinating selection of routes, some of which could be accounted for
by friends/relatives travelling together with different destinations
but on the same general route.
But why do people let the world know where they are? Not using the
device is not enough, It has to be switched off to avoid tracking.
Mine is only switched on when I am willing to accept calls or need to
make a call. That only amounts to a small proportion of my waking
hours so it is more often off than on..
Gosh! How quaint! Someone who thinks a phone is about phone calls these
days. Get with it grandpa!

Apart from anything else, this is about wifi coverage which is for data
which is little used for voice calls.
--
Colin Rosenstiel
Roland Perry
2017-09-09 20:21:13 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
Apart from anything else, this is about wifi coverage which is for data
which is little used for voice calls.
Never used Whats App voice calls, grandad?
--
Roland Perry
r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
2017-09-10 19:16:05 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Roland Perry
Post by r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
Apart from anything else, this is about wifi coverage which is for data
which is little used for voice calls.
Never used Whats App voice calls, grandad?
No, nor Skype on my mobile, as it happens. Do you know the volumes? I did
say little used not unused.
--
Colin Rosenstiel
Roland Perry
2017-09-11 07:10:32 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
Post by Roland Perry
Post by r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
Apart from anything else, this is about wifi coverage which is for data
which is little used for voice calls.
Never used Whats App voice calls, grandad?
No, nor Skype on my mobile, as it happens. Do you know the volumes?
<https://blog.whatsapp.com/10000625/WhatsApp-Calling-100-million-
conversations-every-day>
Post by r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
I did say little used not unused.
Every little helps [tm].

I've taken to using Whats-App voice when the person I'm calling is in a
GSM not-spot, but has wifi coverage.
--
Roland Perry
Nobody
2017-09-09 23:49:54 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Sat, 09 Sep 2017 08:55:05 +0100, Guy Gorton
Post by Guy Gorton
On Fri, 08 Sep 2017 13:03:37 GMT, Recliner
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to tackle
overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.
Fascinating selection of routes, some of which could be accounted for
by friends/relatives travelling together with different destinations
but on the same general route.
But why do people let the world know where they are? Not using the
device is not enough, It has to be switched off to avoid tracking.
Mine is only switched on when I am willing to accept calls or need to
make a call. That only amounts to a small proportion of my waking
hours so it is more often off than on..
Guy Gorton
You're stepping into gradations of goat-herding
Guy Gorton
2017-09-10 08:21:53 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Nobody
On Sat, 09 Sep 2017 08:55:05 +0100, Guy Gorton
Post by Guy Gorton
On Fri, 08 Sep 2017 13:03:37 GMT, Recliner
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to tackle
overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.
Fascinating selection of routes, some of which could be accounted for
by friends/relatives travelling together with different destinations
but on the same general route.
But why do people let the world know where they are? Not using the
device is not enough, It has to be switched off to avoid tracking.
Mine is only switched on when I am willing to accept calls or need to
make a call. That only amounts to a small proportion of my waking
hours so it is more often off than on..
Guy Gorton
You're stepping into gradations of goat-herding
Goat-herding needs it switched on full time to avoid getting lost. I
like goats more than mobile phones because the cheese is tasty..

Guy Gorton
Mark Goodge
2017-09-10 10:24:38 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Sat, 09 Sep 2017 08:55:05 +0100, Guy Gorton
Post by Guy Gorton
On Fri, 08 Sep 2017 13:03:37 GMT, Recliner
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to tackle
overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.
Fascinating selection of routes, some of which could be accounted for
by friends/relatives travelling together with different destinations
but on the same general route.
But why do people let the world know where they are? Not using the
device is not enough, It has to be switched off to avoid tracking.
Mine is only switched on when I am willing to accept calls or need to
make a call. That only amounts to a small proportion of my waking
hours so it is more often off than on..
Then you are in a small minority, and not part of the target market
for the applications in question.

Mark
Guy Gorton
2017-09-10 16:25:31 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Sun, 10 Sep 2017 11:24:38 +0100, Mark Goodge
Post by Nobody
On Sat, 09 Sep 2017 08:55:05 +0100, Guy Gorton
Post by Guy Gorton
On Fri, 08 Sep 2017 13:03:37 GMT, Recliner
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
Commuters could be tracked using their mobile phones under plans to tackle
overcrowding and increase revenue from advertising.
Fascinating selection of routes, some of which could be accounted for
by friends/relatives travelling together with different destinations
but on the same general route.
But why do people let the world know where they are? Not using the
device is not enough, It has to be switched off to avoid tracking.
Mine is only switched on when I am willing to accept calls or need to
make a call. That only amounts to a small proportion of my waking
hours so it is more often off than on..
Then you are in a small minority, and not part of the target market
for the applications in question.
Mark
Very small, going by my observations almost anywhere. There are some
reasons for my reluctance to be tracked, for any purpose, but this is
not the place to discuss them.

Guy Gorton
Mark Goodge
2017-09-09 18:10:23 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
On Fri, 08 Sep 2017 13:03:37 GMT, Recliner
Post by Recliner
<https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/transport-for-london-may-track-commuters-via-phones-to-reduce-overcrowding-b0ss982j7?shareToken=d3406a5e9a7b95fb4dd49507b8be3071>
I don't think anybody's linked to it yet (at least, not in this
thread), but the full report is here:

http://content.tfl.gov.uk/review-tfl-wifi-pilot.pdf

Also (and this has been mentioned, but I'll mention it again because
it's a much better write-up than most newspaper accounts), this
Gizmodo article describes the findings very well:

http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2017/09/london-underground-wifi-tracking-heres-everything-we-learned-from-tfls-official-report/

Mark
r***@cix.compulink.co.uk
2017-09-09 23:33:59 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by h***@yahoo.co.uk
Does not Oyster and Contactless help to determine passenger routes
and flows? Isn't that the reason why TfL introduced it?
Only up to a point. Oyster tells TfL about journeys from King's Cross to
Waterloo but not which of more than 17 possible routes people took.
--
Colin Rosenstiel
Loading...