(Credit: Shelby Brown/

Users are more sensitive to who has access to their data and for what reasons these days than in the past. And as much good as Google does, the company still tracks you.

You can't really use Google Maps (iOS, Android) without location services turned on, but you can delete out your location history and better customize your settings for added privacy.

You can see the log Google keeps of your movements in Google Maps Timeline. When you open the app, tap the hamburger in the top left corner and then tap "Your Timeline." Google reports how far you drove, how long you drove, and how many places you went to (with location services on).

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Unless you need to give an alibi, this might feel a little invasive. Users have a few options though. You can simply delete their location history:

  1. Open Google Maps app
  2. Go to Your Timeline
  3. Tap the upper right-hand corner for Settings
  4. Tap "Delete All Location History" to wipe the log associated with your email account

You can also delete a section of location history by tapping "Delete Location History Range." But this is a temporary fix, because the app will restart the log the next time you're driving.

To totally shut off location history through Google Maps Timeline on your desktop or mobile browser, do the following:

  1. Open your desktop or mobile browser to to get to Google Maps Timeline
  2. Find and click on "Manage Location History"
  3. Switch the toggle on Location History to "off"

By tapping the little gear (if you're in the mobile browser) you can choose "Pause Location History," delete your location history, download a copy of your data, and further edit your preferences.

(Credit: Shelby Brown/

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  1. Google Maps tracks and keeps a record of your location history, including where you go, how long you were on the road, how many places you visited, and how many miles you drove.
  2. Users can edit, delete, pause, or turn off the location history feature by adjusting the settings in Google Maps Timeline.

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Shelby is an Associate Writer for CNET's She served as Editor in Chief for the Louisville Cardinal newspaper at the University of Louisville. She interned as Creative Non-Fiction Editor for Miracle Monocle literary magazine. Her work appears in Glass Mountain Magazine, Bookends Review, Soundings East, and on Her cat, Puck, is the best cat ever.