Security risk: Fitness app shows Dutch military patrol routes in Mali

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Another report in the Guardian points out that the Strava app also reveals locations of USA bases in Afghanistan as soldiers are the sole users of the app in these areas. The California-based company calls itself "the social network for athletes", saying that its mobile apps and website connect millions of people every day.

"Strava released their global heatmap", wrote Ruser. Worryingly that also includes secret military bases. The data is not live but it does reveal patterns, locations, and routines.

The GPS company added that users can turn off the tracking tools or make the information their device is sending out private however, Strava claims that everything else is fair game for public view.

He also pointed on Twitter that it was possible to locate jogging routes for soldiers, who had the app on for tracking during these activities, which is unsafe. "Recent data releases emphasize the need for situational awareness when members of the military share personal information", said Pentagon spokeswoman Harris.

The data can not be used to identify users individually, but it is possible to use Strava without sharing the data publicly.

Strava - which includes an option for keeping users' workout data private - published the updated Heat Map late a year ago.

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This could be a huge security risk, if the publicly-available data was obtained by enemy intelligence.

"It sort of lit up like a Christmas tree", he said after zooming in in Syria, where the scant jogging activity beams out from an all-black background.

The heat map shows more than three trillion individual Global Positioning System data points and one billion activities ever uploaded to Strava. Known military sites like Diego Garcia in the Pacific Ocean and the Falkland Islands' RAF Mount Pleasant also show activity.

What may be worrying is that spies may be able to use this data to detect secret USA bases. However, some areas are unknown locations, which probably mean that they are secret outposts where American soldiers and other military personnel operate.

A military base in Helmand, Afghanistan, as seen on Strava. Giving away your data to a service can have its implications, especially when there is an open-for-all platform where anyone can have a look at the information. "We are committed to helping people better understand our settings to give them control over what they share", Strava said in an emailed statement.

In an engineering blog post from November, Strava said the newest version of the map was built from one billion activities - some three trillion points of data, covering 27 billion km (17bn miles) of distance run, jogged, or swum.

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