Your iPhone can’t keep secrets. Even though Apple wants you to think differently, it is almost always ready to leak the most private information from your life: your travels, your preferences, interests, searches, places you visit most often, work and home addresses, and much more. Yet, it has always been this way, and there was nowhere to go. However, Apple decided that customer privacy was more important to them than advertising companies’ location, and the developers gave us a real opportunity to protect ourselves.
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Every electronic device has an advertising identifier. This unique code is assigned to each gadget with Internet access. It is on it that advertising networks track our actions and form on its basis so-called virtual portraits. Over time, they acquire information about our interests, movements, and requests, become more voluminous, and allow ad networks to recognize us, even without knowing our actual names, to slip us relevant ads occasionally.
How to turn off your advertising ID?
This year, Apple introduced a new rule requiring app developers to ask users for permission to interact with their advertising IDs. If you remember, this provoked the scandal involving Facebook, whose entire business is based on data processing and displaying ads. The social network argued that the need to ask for permission from users would lead to most of them refusing to provide access to their IDs. Therefore, Apple has only partially introduced the new rule.
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Partially – means that developers are not yet required to request permission (the rule will officially take effect with the release of iOS 14.5). Still, users can already prevent them from accessing their advertising IDs, but only manually.
- Go to “Settings” and open “Privacy“;
- In the window that opens, find and open the “Tracking” tab;
You can turn off tracking in applications even before the release of iOS 14.5
- Disable the option “Tracking requests by applications“;
- If you wish, read what you have opted out of in the “Details” section.
How are iPhone users tracked?
Apparently, Apple deliberately hid the tracking request blocking feature so that users would not start to stop developers from accessing their advertising IDs. After all, if everyone starts to turn them off, developers like Facebook will surely whip up and claim that Apple has tricked them again by introducing a new rule before the announced date. Therefore, even if someone turns off advertising identifiers, there will be so few of them that most developers will not notice. Still, it is not very acceptable to take care of your protection today.
However, banning ad IDs alone does not give you 100% tracking protection. Moreover, the apps and web services you interact with can still track your movements. After all, they can receive information from the Wi-Fi points you connect to. Secondly, Apple did not prevent them from accessing geolocation services. It’s just that the application developers will not know that it is you, but they will still track you.
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