A cheating boyfriend was caught thanks to a Fitbit: the risks of wearing a smart watch

Smart devices could reveal much more information about our activities than we think. Ethical hacking experts recall how a woman realized her ex-boyfriend was cheating on her thanks to the use of a Fitbit fitness tracker. 

It all started when Jane Slater, an NFL Network reporter, replied to a contributor’s tweet, which discussed the possibility of giving his wife a fixed Peloton exercise bike. Slater’s tweet gradually caught the attention of her followers and other users of the social network.

“An ex boyfriend once got me a Fitbit for Christmas. I loved it. We synched up, motivated each other… I didn’t hate it until he was unaccounted for at 4am and his physical activity levels were spiking on the app. Wish the story wasn’t real”, Slater said in her tweet.

Following up with her story, Slater posted another tweet, mentioning: “Spoiler Alert: He wasn’t enrolled in OrangeTheory class at 4 A.M.”, referring to a fitness session that includes 12 minutes of intense cardio activity.” For obvious reasons, Slater concluded that her boyfriend was cheating on her. Although she claims she had a bad time after realizing the situation, she says she is now laughing at finding out about it thanks to the use of a Fitbit.

Although Slater refused to provide more details about what happened next, many Twitter users began drawing their own conclusions, to which the reporter responded by thanking them for having made her have a pleasant time, although she also asked her followers to forget the subject, as she has done.

This is a fun anecdote, although it is also a sample of the amount of information these devices can collect about their users. Experts in ethical hacking mention that a Fitbit, like many other “wearables”, stores data such as heart rate, sleeping habits, among other health details about the user.

Recently specialists in ethical hacking from the International Institute of Cyber Security (IICS) mentioned that Google was about to complete the purchase of Fitbit, which would provide the tech giant with a database with more than ten years of health records collected from users of this device. This could be an anecdotal data if not for the existence of Verily, a health company that is part of Alphabet Inc., Google’s parent company.