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Google Maps knows everything about where you've been

By Dirk Libbey ยท 15 replies
Jul 22, 2015
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  1. [parsehtml]<p><img src="https://www.techspot.com/images2/news/header/2014/04/google-maps-search-nearby.png" style="width: 800px;" title="google maps,google,maps" /></p> <p>Google&#39;s entire business model is based around collecting user data. Just in case you weren&#39;t sure how much data is being collected about you, Google is about to show you that they know <em>everything</em>.</p> <p>Google is rolling out a <a href="http://www.engadget.com/2015/07/22/google-maps-shows-what-it-knows-about-everywhere-youve-ever-b/">new feature</a> for Google Maps. Your Timeline is a way to look back and see everywhere that you, or at least your mobile device, has been since you gave Google approval to collect that information. The new feature is in the rollout process for both Android and web versions of Maps.</p> <p>While many might not be so appreciative of the knowledge that Google knows how often you eat at McDonalds and will immediately run to turn off location history in their security settings, for others who like to see that information it can be an interesting trip through memory lane. Technically this information has always been available through location history but the Timeline now brings it front and center.</p> <p>Google says the information is only visible to you, and you can go in and delete parts of it if you&#39;re afraid others might discover how rarely you hit the gym. Or if you just don&#39;t want to face that fact yourself.</p> <p>It&#39;s interesting to use the Timeline to really see how much data Google collects. It&#39;s one thing to know your location is being stored, it is another to see it done in real time. Will this turn people off from sharing their location who have previously been ok with it? How about you?</p><p><a rel='alternate' href='https://www.techspot.com/news/61476-google-maps-knows-everything-about-where-youve.html' target='_blank'>Permalink to story.</a></p><p class='permalink'><a rel='alternate' href='https://www.techspot.com/news/61476-google-maps-knows-everything-about-where-youve.html'>https://www.techspot.com/news/61476-google-maps-knows-everything-about-where-youve.html</a></p>[/parsehtml]
  2. m4a4

    m4a4 TS Evangelist Posts: 925   +493

    Yup, no surprise for me. And it can be helpful if you lose your phone lol
  3. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,007   +661

    I'm okay with this.
  4. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,415   +3,433

    Why would you not be OK with it, under those conditions?
  5. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,875   +1,206

    Yes, it has... I've been looking where I've been using that for over a year at least. The problem was, it didn't update that often and it would show you having traveled across the city without ever having been anywhere in-between. Maybe they updated it now that they're advertising it.
  6. learninmypc

    learninmypc TS Evangelist Posts: 7,499   +376

    Ok :), guru's, if one only has wifi at home, does this work? My iPhone goes with me everywhere but it only is online if I'm at the library or where there is free wifi .?
  7. Yeah...that "feature" has been turned off back when it was implemented. I know exactly how often I go to the gym.
  8. I'm sure they share this data (and more) with the government agencies that "protect" us, even if you decline to keep/share it.
  9. Harry Callahan

    Harry Callahan TS Rookie

    The old version updated at least once a day. How often do you really need?
  10. sadman3

    sadman3 TS Enthusiast Posts: 126

    That is quiet creepy. You can't hide because someone knows where you are. Sounds scary to me. I think VPN could hide you from these kind of applications. Just need to know more about it.
  11. learninmypc

    learninmypc TS Evangelist Posts: 7,499   +376

  12. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,872   +903

    Read up on Location Services. It does not require a wifi connection.
    Several Apps use it and display (as in the GPS) or record (as in the Camera) where you are at the time the App was launched. There are others too.

    To me,it's an issue of privacy especially when I don't want or need the data, so I turn off ALL location services except GPS. (saves battery too)
    Phr3d and learninmypc like this.
  13. learninmypc

    learninmypc TS Evangelist Posts: 7,499   +376

    Thanks @jobeard , that is very helpful :)
  14. Phr3d

    Phr3d TS Guru Posts: 400   +82

    wifi is a power-pig, too and ez to turn on when actually wanted.
  15. Yynxs

    Yynxs TS Addict Posts: 202   +70

    And no one sees this as "tip of the iceberg"? Wait till IPV6 is fully implemented.
  16. ExplEngineer

    ExplEngineer TS Rookie

    The more important question is Why would you be okay with it? The immortality of data should be one of the primary reasons no one should be okay with it. The number of adverse possibilities are ad infinitum. We now live in a Kinetic rather than a Static world where some things that do not matter to you today may one day come back to haunt you. And this is not as innocuous as one may first seem, e.g. the most faithful of spouses in year one through year "x" may lapse in the following year(s) year x + 1 is the most simple of all explanations and current statistics indicate the when both genders are included, the probability of doing so will be >50%. Or, you may become a great target for a "Headhunter" who has the perfect opportunity for you, at ~Current +50% of your yearly salary, and meet with you while you are at a field station or site, with the data entrapped in what may be a company-owned cellular phone, and any major company with a "Security Staff" or "Legal Department will simply be able to run a comparison of movement for your last ten (10) visits to the remote site to identify a variance indicative of unusual practices on a time-line basis so that by using "Exception Analysis" you might be identified as becoming involved in matters that warrant the attention of certain officers, depending upon your importance, and ranking within the corporate hierarchy. At this junction, even before you are aware of where you stand in a potential new employer's "ranking" for the proposed position your current employer will have ways to quietly influence either your ability to depart from the firm, or to accelerate in such a manner that would leave you as vulnerable as the "proverbial child without a chair when the music stops". Each of these is an oversimplification as what consequences may accrue when someone discovers the need for the very same knowledge that they had considered extraneous and irrelevant just a few years ago. Before writing this off as being superfluous and inapplicable to your place in life, one is best served by proactively evaluating any number of similarly innocuous behaviors that could leave you vulnerable at some future date an time. It is not just a challenge for our offspring looking for admission to law school whose fraternity posting to the net of escapades, or even the simple "****-pic" sent a past girlfriend that is now in his file at the admissions office, it may become a pattern of poor judgment that results in a pattern analysis indicative of "the probability that you are, in fact, liable for...". In an era where "Information Rules" there is an implicit threat in information pertaining to your activities that may come into the possession of others is more than an idle threat, it is a principle applicable to virtually everyone, it is only the consequences of such an exposure that may be truly variable. Perhaps the better question would be Why would you willingly, & knowingly accept such an exposure, absent a flaw in you personal program of "Risk Analysis & Mitigation".

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