O2, Vodafon, Telekom and Co. collect customer data. (Symbolic image) © IMAGO/Michael Gstettenbauer
The protection of one's own data is particularly important to many. Mobile phone providers often make this possible within a few clicks. You can find out how this works here.
Kassel – How do customers move around in the supermarket? Where do tourists stay? Where is there a lot going on? Mobile phone data can provide all sorts of information. The evaluation of our data goes far beyond movement. Information such as age or gender is also stored by network providers such as O2 and Telekom.
It is not uncommon for this data to be resold. Many people don't want that – and it's a topic that falls under data protection. Vodafone CEO Hannes Ametsreiter even suggested the use of mobile phone data in the fight against the Corona pandemic.
But what can be done about the sale of data to third parties? With two providers, an objection is quite simple. You can find out exactly how this works – and who the "grey sheep" among network providers is here.
O2: Decide for yourself - An SMS is enough to object to data evaluation
Network provider O2 (Telefónica) offers its customers a simple service to object to "participation in statistical evaluations". All that is needed is an SMS with the word "unsubscribe". Customers will then receive a confirmation, as can be seen on the website. All steps at a glance:
- Send an SMS with the text "Unsubscribe" to the number 66866.
- In this case, unsubscribing stands for "I don't want to participate," as the company states on its website.
- Upon receipt of your SMS, you will receive a confirmation.
Meanwhile, however, O2 customers are facing a veritable wave of cancellations. Thousands of users are to have their mobile phone contract terminated.
Mobile phone provider Telekom: Use opt-out service to object to data transfer
Deutsche Telekom also makes it easy for its customers. The corresponding service to object to data evaluation or disclosure is called opt-out. The corresponding data would be transmitted anonymously, according to the website.
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The data is sent to T-Systems International GmbH, which uses the data "to create projections of traffic flows, for example," according to the company's information. This process can be objected to via the opt-out process. Here's how it works in detail:
- Dial their area code and enter their phone number on the website.
- Then click on the button "Please send code".
- Once you have received the code by SMS, enter it in the field provided. It is a code with four digits.
- Last step: Click on "Send code" to complete your revocation.
Network provider: Objection made easy at O2 and Telekom - and at Vodafone?
While an objection or revocation with Telekom and O2 is quite simple and takes little time, this is not possible with Vodafone. There is a so-called data protection service, through which you can request information, correction, deletion or objection. It is also possible to obtain information via the provider's app. However, there is no direct way to file an objection as with O2 or Telekom, as CHIP also reported.
Most recently, the network provider lost hundreds of thousands of customers. This could be due, among other things, to the prices, which Vodafone has even increased for existing customers. (mbr)