Major newbie here but I have been exploring internet security recently and notice that certain apps seem to consistently know what town I am logged in, Facebook in particular. When I independently run IP lookups I usually get some form of Rogers generic locations, sometimes Toronto, sometimes Ottawa which is fine. The anonymity is great. Occasionally on IP lookups I get my particularly small town. One IP lookup I did had a map location two streets away from where I actually live! Perhaps there is a node there? When I was in Muskoka, Facebook knew that I was in Muskoka. Facebook somehow always knows the town I'm in and it fundamentally bothers me because if they can know it, I assume anyone can know. There is no physical address entered in the Facebook app so just wondering how they might know this info.
Trying to understand the nature of privacy and IP addresses is fairly confusing and I'm just trying to get a handle on it. I could ditch Facebook no problem but it doesn't answer how my home town could be connected to me through the IP address.
Any thoughts? Perhaps I'm asking the wrong questions!
Generally in most cases, there is a thing known as GEOIP. Its the rough geographical location for your IP address. These sort of things are used for like google maps for figuring out roughly where you are for your current location (for devices which do not have GPS). But as well for things like shopping online for stores with physical locations. Where it will automatically find the closest physical store.
But yes, beyond that.. it can be used for more direct marketing. As well.. it COULD be i guess continually recording where you have been, etc.. (not sure how that data could be used per say).
Really the only options in that case, if you really dont want to have that information 'showing' is to use a service like a VPN. It makes you appear to come from wherever that end portal is for the VPN. They would always be seeing that endpoint location. They are good and bad.. there are many people who use them 24/7. But there can be downsides as well. Say if you are trying to get to site XYZ. Normally to get there, it goes from you, to say toronto, to the site hosted nearby. Not a long haul and site loads pretty quickly. But using that VPN.. its endsource could be many locations (depending on the service). It could be coming out of the US? So now its having to connect to that site back in toronto, from down in the states. Not the end of the world, but can slow things down as well.