London's MMM intends to develop a system in the coming months, which will be able to monitor passengers who will be connected to a public WiFi in the underground stations of the city.
The British Transport Organization said on Wednesday that "privacy-enhancing data collection will begin at 8 July 2019" and will also include new improved services for passengers such as updates on delays on routes that will begin to be released by the end of the year of the year.
This system started with a one-time trial, which took place over a month, in order to give the transport organization a "more accurate understanding of how people move through stations, the interaction between services and how to develop congestion". At present, the organization has stated that it will use this data to help invest in public transport.
Wi-Fi hotspots were installed at 54 stations within the 1 to 4 bands. If a passenger had Wi-Fi enabled on his device, hotspots recorded connection attempts and connection searches through his MAC addresses.
Over four weeks, more than 509 million items were collected from 5,6 million devices on 42 million routes.
The new system will be more extensive, but only login requests will be collected by WiFi and will not have access to browsing activities or history.
Until now, the organization has been collecting information on passenger movements from the ticket system, but it does not provide it with as much detail as it needs.
An API with access to passenger information is also under development to create "new products and services".
Passengers wishing to be excluded from this system have the option of simply turning off their device's Wi-Fi or by turning on flight mode when entering the Metro.
Of course, many of them are concerned about privacy protection and whether it is protected by such a system, and the organization states that it will take appropriate measures to avoid creating such problems for the traveling public.