A New York Times report recently revealed that some of the apps you may have on your phone collect data up to 14,000 times a day. There is a tremendous amount of information that is being gathered about your habits and location, and it’s incredibly precise. What is so worrying about this, is that this information is sometimes sold by companies to marketers who use it to create hyper-focused ads.
Fortunately, if you’re using Apple products, you do have the ability to protect yourself far more than with some other devices. If you’re worried that some of your location data may be sold to the highest bidder, you can take steps to limit specific apps from tracking your location data. Or you can disable Apple’s own services if you like.
Disabling location Tracking from certain apps:
Obviously, location tracking can be very beneficial, and even necessary while using certain apps. Such as when using a map, a weather app, Uber, or a feature like Find iPhone. But in most instances, even apps that really don’t need to know your location, such as a photo editing app, usually have a location service feature built in.
So, it is worth taking the time to see exactly which apps are tracking your location, and decide for yourself if you want change the default setting.
You can do so by following these steps:
- Open Settings
- Scroll down to Privacy
- Click on Location Services at the very top.
There, you will find the on and off switch for Location Services. It you turn it off, that will stop all location tracking and the functionality of many apps will be affected. And, in most cases, you don’t want to do that. What you can do though, is usually choose from 3 different settings within each app separately:
Never, While using the App, and Always
If you want to block a certain app from ever tracking your location, simply choose Never.
While Using is probably the setting that I use the most. In this instance apps will only track location while using the app, which is my preferred option. For example, I personally don’t want Uber tracking my location other than while I’m using it. Same thing with the app I use to track my bicycle rides.
Always is an option you may want to choose for something like the Weather app which needs your location to correctly predict the forecast for you. In my case, that’s the only one which is turned on as Always.
So, spend a few minutes going through these various options and make sure to customize these settings to your liking.