Tracking Human Mobility Using WiFi Signals
Author(s)Sapiezynski, Piotr; Stopczynski, Arkadiusz; Gatej, Radu; Lehmann, Sune
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We study six months of human mobility data, including WiFi and GPS traces recorded with high temporal resolution, and find that time series of WiFi scans contain a strong latent location signal. In fact, due to inherent stability and low entropy of human mobility, it is possible to assign location to WiFi access points based on a very small number of GPS samples and then use these access points as location beacons. Using just one GPS observation per day per person allows us to estimate the location of, and subsequently use, WiFi access points to account for 80% of mobility across a population. These results reveal a great opportunity for using ubiquitous WiFi routers for high-resolution outdoor positioning, but also significant privacy implications of such side-channel location tracking.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Media Laboratory; Program in Media Arts and Sciences (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
Public Library of Science
Sapiezynski, Piotr, Arkadiusz Stopczynski, Radu Gatej, and Sune Lehmann. “Tracking Human Mobility Using WiFi Signals.” Edited by Ye Wu. PLoS ONE 10, no. 7 (July 1, 2015): e0130824.
Final published version