Whenever you install an app, you will see the list of permission that it needs. People do not often others reading this, but the mobile apps that you install can request access to your contacts, messages and even your location among other things. If you are concerned more about your privacy factors, then you must be aware of which apps can keep track of your location wherever you visit and you are on. The data on your location and movements are coveted by all sorts of organization.

Therefore advertisers need to hit precisely the right demographic in the perfect location, retailers even want to know what store you are on a visit and even how you move around inside them. There are plenty of organizations that see value in crunching big data to mine nuggets of insights that they can sell to anyone willing to pay.

According to the reports, at least 75 companies receive people’s precise location data from hundreds of apps whose user enable locations services for advantages such as weather alerts. There are hundreds of apps that can follow your movements and share the details with advertisers, retailers and even hedge funds. In New York Times recently, it has been revealed how easy to identify people using location data collected by the mobile apps on our devices. It is quite difficult to know for sure whether location data companies are tracking your mobile devices or not. Any app which collects location data may share your information with other organizations as long as it mentions that somewhere in its privacy policy.

Read The Whole Story: While location tracking data is often anonymized before being sold on, therefore it can reveal that an alarming amount of information about your entire activity.

How to Stop apps Tracking Location on Android Phones?

If you have decided that turning off location tracking altogether is a step too far, then you can still toggle off specific apps which you would prefer not have location data access? The Android makers often have customers menus, therefore the process for doing this might be different on Google pixel versus an android mobile phone made by Samsung or LG. But, it must be relatively similar across devices that run Android P, which is the latest version of Android. Below are some of the steps given that will help you to stop tracking your location on android mobile phones:

  • Open setting
  • Tap “advanced”
  • Now, choose “app permissions”
  • Select “locations”

Now, you will see the list of apps that have access to your locations.  Therefore, turn off the apps that you do not think should know where you are

Usually, people did not find any suspicious apps trying to track on android mobile phones, but that’s diligent about what you allow and what you don’t. The apps that have your permission for location included OpenTable, which shows nearby restaurants with reservation availability and others may not know where you are like Uber and Lyft. Unlike the iPhones, Android only lets you turn permission on and off, instead of only while using the app.

How to stop tracking your location on iPhones?

Things are little more different and straightforward; when it comes to iOS, so if you want to stop tracking your location on your iPhone devices, just follow the given steps:

    • Open settings
    • Tap “privacy”
    • Select “location services”
  • If you need to completely stop all apps from tracking your location, then you must turn location services off
  • If you need to manage the setting app by app, then tap each app and choose “never” or “while using”.

You must make sure that apps do not need your location like most games are set to Never. Other apps must be set to track your location only while you are using them otherwise not. There is no reason an app require to track you all the time without any use.

Bear in mind that this will surely impact some of the service and apps, such as Maps and Find my iPhone, so it may be a step too far. Although, it is worth noting that location services can be re-enabled on the device if it is put in lost mode. Therefore, you must keep your iPhone into lost ode with the help of iCloud.

What happens if your location data is already recorded?

Now, you have prevented various apps and services from tracking your location all the time, but you may be wondering about you can delete the location data which companies have already collected about your movements.

  • If you have an android mobile phone, then you can ask Google to delete your location history. You can simply follow that link and make sure that you are logged into your Google account and tap the red delete location history button and it’s done..!!
  • If you have iPhone, then go to Setting> privacy>location services> scroll down to system services>significant location>tap clear history button at the bottom.

As far as the location data is being collected by other organizations with the help of apps that you have been using, there is no easy way to find out what it is or delete it. Therefore, you could start by referring to the companies in question’s privacy policy and get in touch with them. But, it is very possible that they have already sold your data and they do not have any legal duty to help you.

Conclusion

In future, whenever you install a new app that asks for permission to access your location, you might consider ways to refuse that and then reconsidering it for later option. The idea is to be aware that even vetted apps store apps may be selling your location data, so never just let them tracking your location by default.