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Google maps tracks our mobile location accurately using multiple ways: gps, cellular network, nearby wifi networks etc. It knows the hotels, banks and other places I have been to. Recently, when I uploaded a photo of a cafeteria, it thanked me and showed up all the places I have been to in the past. It is really a sort of breach of privacy. I want to fool google maps into thinking that I am at a different place. Is there a way I can "mislead" google maps into using wrong location information?

Note: some answers suggested way to remain anonymous. My concern is not about staying anonymous. I literally want to mislead google maps.

closed as too broad by Matthew, Conor Mancone, forest, Tom K., AndrolGenhald Jul 5 '18 at 15:16

Please edit the question to limit it to a specific problem with enough detail to identify an adequate answer. Avoid asking multiple distinct questions at once. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    Sure, fake the data on all the data sources it uses to determine your location – schroeder Jul 4 '18 at 16:17
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    Although this question is certainly too broad, I have no idea why anyone would flag it as "attempting to break the security of a system". When the adversary is Google and the personal information is your location, then surely questions regarding location anonymity are on-topic. – forest Jul 5 '18 at 2:52
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Your question could be split into several parts; if you use Google through a browser, and that browser is not controlled by Google (say for instance, you're using a private window in Firefox on a laptop), then a VPN should protect you; google will only have access to the information Firefox provides it.

If you're using an Android phone though, and are logged in with your google account, then obviously Google has access both directly to your phone, and whatever info your browser is providing google.

So what then if you use a secure browser to access the Google web page form an Android phone? Depending on what you need, a VPN might keep you safe enough here: Google may be able to see your physical location using GPS, nearby networks, etc, but may yet not be able to connect that info with any action you do in the context of your browser.

In other words, Google may know where you are, but have no idea that it is you who are doing whatever you are doing on www.google.com in your browser.

Based on you question (specifically mentioning GPS, etc), I'm guessing this distinction is not of any great significant to you, but thought it might be worth mentioning anyway.

Beyond that, I can basically see two options:

  • Use the settings under your Google Account to delete your location data, and choose to trust that Google really will delete your private data here. I would assume there are other settings too, to minimize the amount of data Google gathers about you, but again - it comes down to trusting Google in the end.
  • Get a different / extra (non-Android) phone, on which you can limit Google`s access to your data.

Neither option is ideal if you're even slightly paranoid, but if you want your phone to be able to connect to a network (cellular or wifi), then I really can't see any other option.

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This can be easily achieved by using a serious VPN provider. Your privacy is your privacy, and you are allowed to protect it.

VPN's are designed to do this, it will set your location to another country/city, change IP/headers, and more - depending on how advanced the VPN is.

However note that when using Google services, you agree most of the times to send your location, so you cannot really say that it's a "breach of privacy".

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    VPN will not protect against WiFi location, GPS, or cellular network metadata. – schroeder Jul 5 '18 at 8:52
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    First line of the question: "Google tracks our location accurately using multiple ways: gps, cellular network, nearby wifi networks etc. " – schroeder Jul 5 '18 at 9:00
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    If CyberGhost and VPN Tunneling apply, can you expand your answer to explain how? I'm reading CyberGhost's material and I cannot find anything to address WiFi location, GPS, or cellular network metadata. Their material talks about IP network layer protection not other forms of networks or on lower layers. – schroeder Jul 5 '18 at 9:00
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    I'm afraid you may have misunderstood the question. It is not talking about browsing, but about the physical location of the device. VPNs are not going to help with that. – schroeder Jul 5 '18 at 9:13
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    Not to mention, VPNs are not "designed to protect your privacy". That is a common myth that is spread by commercial VPN companies who abuse the word "private" in the acronym. There are still dozens of ways to uniquely identify your specific computer, even with a VPN. – forest Jul 5 '18 at 10:24

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