Google’s creepiest Maps feature can help stop the coronavirus

%name Google’s creepiest Maps feature can help stop the coronavirus by Authcom, Nova Scotia\s Internet and Computing Solutions Provider in Kentville, Annapolis Valley
  • Google released a new mapping resource that can help slow the spread of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
  • The new Community Mobile Reports show anonymized location data that can help authorities understand whether social distancing measures are being taken.
  • Google collects the data from phones just like it does for Google Maps, but it says it won’t reveal any identifying info to authorities.
  • Visit BGR’s homepage for more stories.

Google came under fire a few years ago for collecting user data from phones even when users thought that wasn’t happening. Since then, Google took several steps to ensure that users have more control over their location data. You can delete your data from Google’s servers manually or automatically and even use Google Maps anonymously. Android 10 also guards your location data better than ever. Yet Google still can identify you in a crowd, as we’ve seen just recently when a biker became the prime suspect in a burglary because of his training-related location data. On the other hand, the massive amount of location data that Google collects helps it improve popular services like Google Maps that depend on location information.

But if there ever was a time when Google’s location tracking abilities could come in handy, it’s now. The novel coronavirus pandemic can only be fought with strict social distancing measures. Flattening the curve is the main goal of most governments around the world, and that can only be done if most of the population complies with directives to stay at home. And Google is now ready to harness its location data to alert local governments if their social distancing orders are not being followed.

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Google’s creepiest Maps feature can help stop the coronavirus originally appeared on on Fri, 3 Apr 2020 at 10:58:26 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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