Location-Aware Browsing

Websites that use location-aware browsing will ask where you are in order to bring you more relevant information, or to save you time while searching. Let’s say you’re looking for a coffee shop in your area. A website will be able to ask you to share your location so that simply searching for “coffee” will bring you the answers you need... no further information or extra typing required.

Or, if you’re mapping out directions to get somewhere, the website will know where you’re starting from so all you have to do is tell it where you want to go.


How Does it Work?

When you visit a location-aware website, your browser will ask you if you want to share your location.

If you consent, the browser gathers information about nearby wireless access points and your computer’s IP address. Then the browser sends this information to the default geolocation service provider, Google Location Services, to get an estimate of your location. That location estimate is then shared with the requesting website.

If you say that you do not consent, the browser will not do anything.


How to Disable Location Aware Browsing

Here is how to disable this feature in most common browsers.


Internet Explorer 9

Go to Control Panel > Network and Sharing > Internet Options > Privacy tab and check the box next to ‘Never allow web sites to request your physical location’ and click OK to save the settings.


Firefox 4

Type about:config In the URL bar and hit enter. Confirm the security warning and type geo.enabled in the filter field. Double click on the geo.enabled to disable Location-Aware Browsing.


Google Chrome

Click the Wrench icon and select Options. In the Options window, select the ‘Under the hood tab’ and click the button ‘Content Settings’. In this window, select the Location tab and select the option ‘Do not allow any site to locate my physical location’. Click Close button to save the settings.


Opera

Go to menu - Settings - Preferences - Advanced - Network, and uncheck "Enable geolocation".


If the directions above do not match your browser settings, you would need to contact support for your browser for current instructions on disabling location aware browsing.

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