In 2011, Fitbit users found themselves in for a major shock. Not only were their profiles public by default, but a quick Google search could allow you to find pretty much anyone's information. That includes not just how active you (or, say, your neighbors) were, but what kind of activities you were involved in. And, shall we say, even more personal details? Users found their entries — some of which bore telling labels like "Sexual Activity, Active, vigorous effort" — on the internet for all to see.
The realization hit during the Fourth of July weekend, and to their credit, Fitbit immediately went into crisis control and locked down all information logged by their users. They also reached out to search engines to ask them to remove the data, and it was only then that a very important lesson was learned by all. Fitbit's default settings were changed to private, but that's not the end of the problems.
In January 2016, some Fitbit users found their accounts hacked by shady cyber thieves who were trying to use active accounts to order replacement Fitbits through their warranty. Other potential dangers came to light, too, when users realized hackers also had access to their schedules, the times they were usually asleep, and their regular routines for running or biking.
A month later, things got even scarier. Researchers from the University of Toronto (via PCWorld) took a look at just what information was being broadcast by a number of wearable fitness trackers that included the Fitbit. They found that every one of them (except for the Apple Watch) emitted a constant Bluetooth signal that could be picked up and tracked. Creepy? It gets creepier. They also found the information the trackers were sending could be read by beacons, and that technology can be used by retail stores and shopping centers to profile customers as they walked in the door.