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Security & privacy

Facebook isn’t happy you’re protecting your privacy

Facebook is scrambling as new smartphone operating systems are making it easier to protect your privacy from the social media giant’s snooping. This has Facebook doing everything it can to persuade users to not shut it out.

For the company whose CEO has said “the future is private,” it’s amusing that Facebook is desperately trying to steer account holders away from privacy settings that make it easier to ghost the company as it attempts to track their locations. With incident after incident of Facebook data breaches and exposures, users locking out the company shouldn’t come as much of a surprise.

Read on to find out what has Facebook in such a panic and what strategy it’s using to keep people from clamping down on their privacy settings. We’ll also let you know what it means for the average user.

It’s shields up against Facebook

The forthcoming iOS 13 and Android 10 will give users more tools to not only protect their data but also prevent Facebook from tracking users’ locations. For Facebook, this could be a direct hit to its bottom line as it makes it more difficult to target advertising.

Android 10 is the final stages of beta testing. Apple’s iOS 13 will be launched on Sept. 19.

Facebook is now on a campaign to convince users that the app works better if it always knows where you are. Good luck with that Facebook.

Devices with Android 10 and iOS 13 will give users the option to allow location access in general to an app, or only allow access when the app is actively being used. What this means to you is that you can set your security settings to allow Facebook to constantly know your location or only when you are using the app.

Androids’ old operating systems run Facebook in the background but Facebook says it will “continue to respect your most restrictive settings choice.” For iOS, the situation becomes stickier for Facebook.

If you update to iOS 13, you will receive notifications about when an app is using your location in the background and how many times it has accessed that information. Perhaps most chilling to Facebook is that the notifications on iOS 13 include a map of the location data an app has received, plus an explanation of why the app uses that type of information.

‘Facebook is better with location’

“Facebook is better with location.” That’s the very first line in the Facebook blog post discussing changes coming with Android 10 and iOS 13.

The post goes on to extol the virtues of Facebook always knowing where you are by stating, “it powers features like check-ins and makes planning events easier.” While adding that constantly knowing your location keeps you safe, Facebook glosses over that it also “helps improve ads…”

There it is in a nutshell. Facebook isn’t concerned about your privacy, it’s really trying to protect its ability to make money by targeting advertising to you as you go about your day.

Also, the company plans to build new features to lure you into giving Facebook ongoing access to your location through local alerts and new maps in Events “to help you find things to do with friends nearby.”

While Facebook states that your privacy matters, it also brazenly tells users that, “We may still understand your location using things like check-ins, events and information about your internet connection.” In other words, Facebook is telling you that even if you limit location settings, the company is going to get your information one way or another.

If you’ve ever thought of getting off Facebook, now’s your chance to do it. You can either tighten up the settings with Android 10 or iOS 13 or just take the plunge and delete your account.

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