Apple was found to be keeping a log of information on user whereabouts that was freely available for anyone who managed to get their hands on the data. The April 2011 controversy arose after researchers discovered what looked to be secret files on the iPhone that tracked user location stored on the device, without the permission of the device owner. Apple said that the data was not for the purposes of tracking where people are. Instead it was to help the company's devices zero in on their location using information from part of a larger database. The company promised that a future software update would cut down the time this data was stored on the phone, and that it would be encrypted.