LITTLE ROCK – Simply turning off the Location History for Google accounts does not stop the tech company from tracking a user’s location. According to an investigation published this week by the Associated Press, Google can track time-stamped location data from devices when the maps feature, browser or even the weather app is opened. But there is a way to stop the company from tracking locations.
“Google is a popular web browser and email provider across the country,” said Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge. “While we often expect privacy from these companies, in reality we must take extra steps to turn off location functions to prevent the company from peering into our daily schedules.”
Attorney General Rutledge released the following information about Google’s location tracking:
- Location tracking is necessary to use some phone apps such as Google Maps.
- Location tracking can be helpful when searching for information like the weather, shopping, restaurants and lodging.
- For most apps, location setting options such as “always,” “while using the app” or “never” are available. An explanation of these terms can be found in the app settings.
- Changes need to be made to the Google account to turn off location tracking.
- To turn off location tracking, Google users can open the account, access account information from the drop down menu at the top right corner. iPhone users may click on Personal Info & Privacy, go to My Activity, open Activity Controls and turn off the toggle at Web & App Activity. (Android users can find this under Data & Personalization.)
For more information and tips to avoid scams and other consumer-related issues, contact the Arkansas Attorney General’s office at (800) 482-8982 or firstname.lastname@example.org or visit ArkansasAG.gov or facebook.com/AGLeslieRutledge.