Safety TipsTechnology

Social Media – Do you know who’s tracking who and where?

By Sep 24, 2018 No Comments

Who's tracking you?

Do you sometimes get the feeling that someone is watching you? Not the kind of feeling where you are strutting your spring body and know peeps are watching, but the eerie kind of watching that you can’t explain. Well, chances are that you are being tracked on social media and beyond.

Who’s tracking me?

Do you have a cellphone? Are you on social media? Then you could be monitored and tracked, even as you read this blog post. Data privacy settings on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, have left users asking about data control access.

Do you know just how much information is being tracked, who’s doing the tracking and the safety implications thereof? Social media tracking is no secret. What you may not know is that many other apps are also gunning for you.

Let’s give you a practical example. Take Google for instance. Here are some of the products and service offerings where Google is tracking your activity.

  • Assist
  • Drive
  • Google Apps
  • Maps
  • Search
  • Voice & Audio

What exactly is being tracked?

When last did you make a Google search query? Perhaps you searched while signed onto your phone; Google tracked that. They also monitor all the stuff you’ve searched for on their search engine while browsing from your school laptop, internet café, tablet or home desktop.

If you’re a bit of a digital junky, chances are you’ve already latched onto the Assistant Commands. Let’s say you ask your Google Home speaker what the weather is in your area; Google uses such info along with specific hints from your search history to gather information about you.

Can’t I just turn off my location?

You can, but it is a lot trickier than that to get off the technology radar. Even with your location button turned off, your exact location may still be known. Your “current location” may still be linked to specific tracked activities, even though you’ve turned off your location history.

For example, when you conduct a Google search, Google can still know that you did this from your  “current location”. This information is stored and tracked. You may also have Google Maps running non-stop in the background, continually tracking your location and storing this information.

Thanks to the power of social media and the interconnectivity of it all, your whereabouts may not be as hidden as you think. Right there in your student digz or all alone at your crib – wherever you may be – you need to be aware that you could be located and tracked.

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