Facebook Tracks every place you go – and Here is how you can stop it

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Facebook app has become ubiquitous in every mobile device. There is rarely anyone who does not use Facebook and Messenger on daily basis. However, most people use Facebook by turning a blind eye to it and without questioning its privacy policy. We often neglect the fact that Facebook tracks our location and knows everywhere we go. This brings huge concerns regarding the vulnerabilities and risks to its users. That’s why it has become crucially important to figure out how exactly Facebook tracks our location and what we can do to prevent it.

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How Facebook tracks you

It may not come as surprise for you when I say that Facebook tracks you on its platforms. If you use the Facebook app on your phone, it keeps a log of every place you visit. The tentacles of Facebook reach across various websites and apps that you use on your phone. Every website or service that you have signed in using Facebook sends some sort of data to Facebook. Although the news of Facebook tracking you could not surprise you, the obscure level of details in their data might actually surprise you. Not only they keep a record of when and where you went but also how long you actually stayed there.

There is a general misconception in the public that Facebook registers our location only when we post a picture by tagging the location of the place. This is not true. Recently, it was discovered that Facebook tracks you even if you are not using their app actively. In other words, it means that they are tracking you even if you are offline and the app is not opened at all.

Facebook says it tracks users’ location to “let you explore what’s around you, get more relevant ads, and help improve Facebook.” It also says that this is done “for building a history of precise locations received through our devices”. When Location History is on, Facebook will add your current precise location to your Location History when you’re using the app. Even though it ascertains that our location history is private and secure, I find it difficult to believe since it has failed to protect users’ data in the past.

Stopping Facebook from tracking your phone location

Stop facebook from tracking our location
  1. Launch the Facebook application on your iPhone or Android device.
  2. Go to the menu bar on your right-top side. The Menu Button looks like three horizontal bars stacked together.
  3. Go to Settings and Privacy.
  4. Now choose Privacy Shortcuts.
  5. Select manage your location settings.
  6. Choose Location Access.
  7. Then turn off “Location History”.
  8. Tap Location Services and turn off “Use Location”.

Deleting your Location History

If you have been using the Facebook app for a while, you must be worried that it possesses data on all your previous location history. Well, there is good news for you. You can undo this by deleting the previously existing location data.

  1. Launch the Facebook app on your phone.
  2. Go to the menu bar on your right-top side. The Menu Button looks like three horizontal bars stacked together.
  3. Go to Settings and Privacy.
  4. Choose Privacy Shortcuts.
  5. Select manage your location settings.
  6. Select “View your location history”.
  7. Tap the menu button on the right.
  8. Choose “Delete all location history”.

Reminder: If you post a picture by tagging the location of the place, you might be giving permission to track your location to Facebook again. In that case, you will have to follow the above steps thoroughly once again.

Conclusion

“THE BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU!!” is the central theme of George Orwell’s dystopian novel 1984. This dystopia is turning more and more into reality with each passing day. Facebook has appeared to be the ‘Big Brother’ of our time who is constantly keeping surveillance on us. Time and again we hear about Facebook data breaches and their recklessness on user’s data. Therefore, it has become imperative to be self-conscious about our data and the way we use the Facebook app.

Stay Protected!

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