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Google clarifies how it tracks users even with Location History off

Engadget

After the Associated Press reported that certain Google apps still track you even if you turned off location history, Google has changed its help pages and tried to clarify the issue. "We have been updating the explanatory language about Location History to make it more consistent and clear across our platforms and help centers," Google told the AP in a statement. The AP's investigation found that with Location History off, Google still stores your coordinates when you open Maps or even do searches, even if they're not related to where you are. After the report first surfaced, Google effectively denied there was a problem, saying "we provide clear descriptions of these tools." Google has now removed the misleading language on the Location History help page.


Google Maps is DOWN: Navigation app crashes for frustrated users around the world

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Even if you have'Location History' off, Google often stores your precise location. Here's how to delete those markers and some best-effort practices that keep your location as private as possible. But there's no panacea, because simply connecting to the internet on any device flags an IP address that can be geographically mapped. Smartphones also connect to cell towers, so your carrier knows your general location at all times. Fire up your browser and go to myactivity.google.com.


Google provides 911 call centers with more accurate location data

Engadget

Google is providing 911 operators with more accurate location information from callers using Android phones. The company has partnered with T-Mobile and emergency technology companies RapidSOS and West to send location data from its Emergency Location Service to 911 call centers when an Android user places an emergency call. For T-Mobile customers, that information will be sent via the carrier and when call centers use RapidSOS, Google's location data will be sent through the emergency technology company. In the US Virgin Islands, Google has integrated this technology in partnership with West. Google tested this system earlier this year, sending its location data straight to 911 call centers when Android users called the emergency service.


Shocking report reveals how your apps track your every move and share the data with advertisers

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Hundreds of popular apps are collecting location data that they claim is anonymous, but further analysis shows it can be easily linked to specific users. These apps include ones like the Weather Channel, GasBuddy and WeatherBug, many of which inform users that they collect location data, but not necessarily how the data will be used, an investigation from the New York Times found. The findings have raised both privacy and security concerns as advocates say many users are unaware how much they're being tracked. The location data was as precise as within a few yards and was found to update with new information thousands of times each day. In one case, data was collected from a child's phone The Times gained access to a database from a company that included information from more than a million phones in the New York area.


The iPhone 11 Pro's Location Data Puzzler -- Krebs on Security

#artificialintelligence

One of the more curious behaviors of Apple's new iPhone 11 Pro is that it intermittently seeks the user's location information even when all applications and system services on the phone are individually set to never request this data. Apple says this is by design, but that response seems at odds with the company's own privacy policy. The privacy policy available from the iPhone's Location Services screen says, "If Location Services is on, your iPhone will periodically send the geo-tagged locations of nearby Wi-Fi hotspots and cell towers (where supported by a device) in an anonymous and encrypted form to Apple, to be used for augmenting this crowd-sourced database of Wi-Fi hotspot and cell tower locations." The policy explains users can disable all location services entirely with one swipe (by navigating to Settings Privacy Location Services, then switching "Location Services" to "off"). When one does this, the location services indicator -- a small diagonal upward arrow to the left of the battery icon -- no longer appears unless Location Services is re-enabled.