Sharing location with Apps
Privacy is a loose term nowadays with technology. We have the internet at our beckoning call with our smartphones. Included in our phones are apps; these apps often ask us if they can use “location services.” When downloading a new app, it will ask if you want location services:
- Only when using the app
Why are there location services on apps?
Location tracking helps apps utilize mapping, navigation, and weather. The idea of having your location is so the app can better assist you and your request. Apps like Doordash or Yelp will take the information from your area and try to find the best dining, haircuts, and bars based on location, reviews, and cost. Most apps like the calculator or voice memos do not need location services, but they have been linked to leaking data about a user’s location due to faulty software.
Problem with location sharing
Lots of people have fitness trackers such as Fitbit or Garmin, that track your location. Fitness trackers can be detrimental, especially towards people in occupations where they cannot disclose their location, like the military. Since location services have been leaked, the military bans troops from wearing their fitness trackers on deployments. Therefore, you may think to turn off your location services is enough. Sadly, some apps are programmed poorly and will still track your location even when you turn them off. Having this information can reveal an accurate picture of your routine and potentially give away personal information such as a specific router with an IP address or the building you reside at.
Being concerned about your privacy is entirely valid. Turning off your location is the first step to protect yourself, as said before, some apps do not turn off your location even when you do. Here is a list of best practices to improve your privacy.
Using apps associated with Google, Apple, Facebook, Snapchat, and Twitter tend to have privacy breaching. They regulate their security issues, but since they are such big businesses, they are often under intense scrutiny.
Paying over Free
Free apps are very accessible, but that means that their software might be faulty. Paying for an app can ensure that security is taken seriously. Having a separate revenue means that a company is not as motivated to solicit your location data and other personal information to businesses.
Do your research
Before using apps, you might want to see what is out there about you. Using sites like GladiKnow (gladiknow.com), a person search platform database, you can find out what is out there. Information such as phone numbers, online usernames, and accounts that you have created.
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