Prevent websites from tracking your location, by disabling Geolocation in your browser

Geolocation is a relatively new feature in the recent versions of most browsers. It allows websites to track your physical location, ostensibly, with a view to offer you location related search results, services or options.

You may have noticed that whenever you visit any website which requires access to your location the first time, you will see your browser saying that this website requires access to you location. We have the option to allow or disallow access, but we normally allow this. When you allow access, your IP address, along with your device details, MAC address, etc can be sent. These details are saved in Cookies. Other websites will not be able to access this data – only the website you have given access.

The privacy conscious among you may not want to disclose their physical location. Such users can tell their browsers to deny access by disabling the Geolocation feature. Let us see how to do it in Internet Explorer, Chrome, Opera and Firefox web browsers.

Disable Geolocation in Internet Explorer

Open Internet Explorer > Internet Options > Privacy tab. Under Location check Never allow websites to request your physical location. Also press the Clear Sites button to remove old sites which have access to your physical location.

Disable Geolocation

Click Apply/OK and Exit IE.

The registry key affected by the change of this setting is:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Geolocation

The value of BlockAllWebsites as 1, will mean Do not allow, whereas 0 would mean Allow websites to request your location.

This will block all websites from using Microsoft Location Services to find your computer’s approximate physical location.

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Disable Geolocation in Chrome browser

Open your Chrome and click on the Spanner icon > Settings > Scroll down > Click on Show advanced settings. Under Privacy, click on Content Settings button. Again scroll down, till you see Location.

Here check the Do not allow any site to track my physical location radio button.

Click OK and Exit.

Disable Geolocation in Opera browser

Open your Opera > Settings > Preferences. Click on Advanced tab and then on Network. Uncheck the Enable geolocation option.

Click OK and exit.

Disable Geolocation in Firefox browser

Open Firefox. Click on Settings and press the Privacy tab. Here under Tracking, check the Tell websites I do not want to be tracked check-box.

Click on OK and Exit.

Once you have done this, you should clear your Internet cache, Browser History & Cookies before you start using your browser.

Posted by on , in Category Windows with Tags
Anand Khanse is the Admin of TheWindowsClub.com and a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows for the period 2006-16. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.