Use Google apps on your iPhone or Android phone and you’re probably being tracked. The first step is to disable your Google account’s location history.
However, you may not be completely out of the woods.
It is possible that some Google apps may still be storing your location data, and simply opening the Google Maps app or using Google search on any platform logs your approximate location and time and thus are a part of “google tracking”.
Several states filed lawsuits in January against Google, the world’s largest search engine, alleging that the company improperly collected and used location data. “Nearly impossible” to avoid being tracked, they claim, because of Google.
In the wake of a 2018 investigation by the Associated Press on how to stop Google from tracking, Google added features such as “Your Data in Maps and Search to make it easier to control what location and other data is saved and what is deleted so you can hide data from google. “Google falsely led consumers to believe that changing their account and device settings would allow customers to protect privacy and control what personal data the company could access,” said DC Attorney General Karl Racine. Since then, Google has come to its defense.
Here we will lay out steps for you to follow to disable google tracking your location.
How To Stop Google From Tracking
Here’s a step by step guide on how to stop google from tracking your location by completely disabling Google’s ability to track your location:
- Log in to your Google account in the top right corner of Google.com, whether on a desktop or mobile device.
- Select Manage your Google account from the user icon in the upper right corner of the screen.
- Afterwards, select Privacy and personalization.
- Select Activities and locations you’ve been to.
- In the History settings box, click Location history. 6. Activity Controls are displayed.
- Click the Turn off button on the right of Location History. A pop-up window appears.
- Click Pause at the bottom of this window after you’ve scrolled all the way down.
The Google Maps Timeline feature, which records your location with specific data at a specific time, will not be affected if you turn off location history. “Some location data may continue to be saved in other settings,” such as your web and app activity, even if you’ve turned off location services on your phone, according to Google’s support page.
That information is never shared with third parties or advertisers by Google, according to the company’s statement. However, if you still don’t feel at ease with this, there are a few more steps you can take to prevent google tracking your location.
Another way to stop Google tracking is using a VPN like VeePN. VeePN allows you to browse the web securely by masking your ip address, the same ip address that Google aims at tracking. If you hide ip address you will probably stop worrying about google tracking any of your in use devices with VeePN. These “how to stop google from tracking” guides will be beneficial if you are serious about safeguarding your privacy either on the move or continuously in daily life.
What Does This Mean For Google?
In order to prevent Google tracking certain location markers associated with specific actions and stop storing information collected from searches or other activity, this setting must be disabled. By turning it off, you can keep your general location and other locations you visit private, including your home address, just like with using VeePN.
You should be aware that in order to make full use of some features, such as the Maps app, Google will still need to know where you are. However, if you follow the above steps, it will no longer store any future activity for you. In order to protect your privacy, Google timestamps your activity within a general area of more than one square mile with at least 1,000 other users. Detecting unusual activity, like a sign-in from a different city, can be done while still maintaining personal privacy, according to Google’s help page.
In order to get the best search results for where you are, you can give Google permission to use your precise location—your exact location, like a specific address—to do so.
The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Disabling Google Tracking
Disabling this default setting has its downsides. Invasion of privacy concerns aside, Google’s settings allow for a more tailored online experience, such as helping people find local businesses rather than ones in another city or seeing ads tailored to their interests. According to Google, they aid in providing users with more relevant information rather than random information.
If you don’t want to be tracked, you won’t see as many relevant ads, and you won’t get as many helpful search suggestions. To stop Google from making predictions about your interests, you can turn off tracking if you like personalized ads or use VeePN. The loss of precision may be worth it for those who value their privacy above all else.
If you want to keep your privacy while still enjoying personalized search results and ads, you can do so, but you’ll have to give up some privacy in the process.
Additional Data You Can Disable From Being Tracked By Google
Your YouTube viewing history, as well as information about you that influences the ads you see on the internet, can be vulnerable under google tracking. On the Data & personalization page of your Google account settings, you can see more information about both of these.
You can learn a lot about what Google knows about you by visiting the Data & Personalization page’s Ad personalization section. Disabling ad personalization entirely (click the button to slide it left) only affects the ads you see, not the number of ads you are served or the amount of information Google collects on your behalf.