Location tracking technology combines several other technologies that can be put together in order to create efficient and accurate systems used to track livestock, inventory or fleet vehicles. Identical systems could be made to provide wireless devices location-based services. Present technologies utilized to make location-based and location-tracking systems include the Geographic Information Systems, Global Positioning System, Radio Frequency Identification and Wireless Local Area Network.
Smartphones and other mobile devices have numerous ways to identify and give out locations. This includes the user’s internet connection, the built-in GPS receiver of the device, and mobile data connection. Whichever way is used to know and share locations depends on the mobile device, the connections the device has access to, the apps that access and use those connections or networks, and the location data of the device.
Sharing and Hiding Your Location
Sharing the location of your smartphone with people you trust can be a good thing, particularly on certain situations. For one, this makes them aware of your whereabouts making it easier to locate and reach you in times of emergencies. Online platforms, such as social media, make it easy for you to share information with your family, friends and your other online contacts. However, depending on how the privacy setting of your device is set, your current whereabouts and other information can be shared publicly as well. This is something that you want to avoid and prevent for good reasons.
Protecting your information and ensuring your privacy and security are very good reasons for you to stop your smartphone from sharing its location for it to be tracked. Of all the data given away, location is possibly the most personal and private, since one’s daily movements not only draws a picture of one’s life but also provides opportunities for any third party to deduce so much information, including where one resides and their daily routine. If such information unfortunately catches the eye of someone with malicious intent, the outcome can be distressing or dreadful, like physical tracking or stalking, blackmail, and the risk of deeply personal secrets to be disclosed. If you clearly understand these possible threats, then you should think twice and wise about giving out your location.
Stop Your Phone from Being Tracked
Depending on the kind of phone or device that you have, there is a way for you to hide your location. For all devices, here are ways for you to avoid giving away your location and prevent being traced.
- When in public places, switch off the ability of your phone to connect to a Wi-Fi network as this eliminates the possibility of your phone to automatically connect to Wi-Fi networks collecting location data.
- Switch off GPS and other location services on your device for an added layer of protection from location trackers that are most common.
- Be careful and mind the websites where you download from. It’s best to download and install apps from authorized sites/stores to protect your device from malware, malicious files and apps, suspicious sites, unsafe links.
- Use a VPN to browse. A Virtual Private Network makes it possible for one to anonymously browse the Web by generating a private network from an internet connection that is available to the public. A VPN encrypts one’s internet data, hides IP address and even one’s physical location.