Economy, Sci & Tech

Google Tracks Your Movements, Like It or Not

Google Tracks Your Movements, Like It or Not    Google Tracks Your Movements, Like It or Not

Google wants to know where you go so badly that it records your movements even when you explicitly tell it not to.

An Associated Press investigation found that many Google services on Android devices and iPhones store your location data even if you have used a privacy setting that says it will prevent Google from doing so.

Computer-science researchers at Princeton confirmed these findings at the AP’s request.

For the most part, Google is upfront about asking permission to use your location information. An app like Google Maps will remind you to allow access to location if you use it for navigating. If you agree to let it record your location over time, Google Maps will display that history for you in a “timeline” that maps out your daily movements.

Storing your minute-by-minute travels carries privacy risks and has been used by police to determine the location of suspects. So the company lets you “pause” a setting called Location History.

Google says that will prevent the company from remembering where you have been. Google’s support page on the subject states, “You can turn off Location History at any time. With Location History off, the places you go are no longer stored.”

That is not true. Even with Location History paused, some Google apps automatically store time-stamped location data without asking. It is possible, although laborious, to delete it.


Add new comment

Read our comment policy before posting your viewpoints