Opt-in feature to help Facebook improve the platform

Oct 5, 2018 19:14 GMT  ·  By  ·  Comment  · 

Instagram is currently testing an opt-in feature which would send your precise location history to its parent company Facebook even when the app is not running on your device according to mobile researcher Jane Manchun Wong.

This is not the first time when Facebook uses data from one of its other products. In 2016 it grabbed data from Whatsapp to provide the social network's users with improved friend suggestions.

That practice was stopped in its tracks because of EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) regulations, and it ended for Facebook with a $122 million fine.

"To confirm, we haven’t introduced updates to our location settings. As you know, we often work on ideas that may evolve over time or ultimately not be tested or released," said a Facebook spokesperson according to TechCrunch.

"Instagram does not currently store Location History; we’ll keep people updated with any changes to our location settings in the future," also said the spokesperson.

According to the Location History settings screen, this setting allows Facebook to create a profile containing precise location data sent by your device's Location services.

The Location History sharing feature between Instagram and Facebook is still in testing

As the same screen also says, if you leave the Location History option enabled, Facebook will keep recording your location even if you're not using the app.

Although you can turn off the Location History feature and this way tell Facebook to stop monitoring your location, they will still receive location information from your device to use it with other features such as sharing location-tagged content on the social network.

Facebook also says that "Location History helps you explore what’s around you, get more relevant ads, and helps improve Facebook."

Question is if it's really that good of an idea to add even more personal information to Facebook's databases in light of the huge security breach it went through affecting 50 million of its users.

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Instagram Sharing Location with Facebook
Location History settings screen
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