Locus Map communicates secretly with Facebook!?

Walther Schubert shared this question 8 months ago
Answered

Facebook is contacted via at least four different Urls (see attached screenshot).

Please tell which information you reveal to Facebook and why.

I never agreed that Locus Map shares data with Facebook. I do not have a Facebook account either.

I also read your statements regarding the GDPR and cannot find any related information.

According to the law you are obliged to describe any tracking which shall be off by default and the user can opt in case.

Comments (3)

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Aus reiner Wissbegierde,

which app made this log. And how do I have to read that log, that I know, that locus is sending information to Facebook and not to Amazon. Third blue line.

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This is Netguard which allows to control the internet traffic for each app and individual addresses. (No root necessary.)

It is quite frightening to see what's going on under the hood, but really enlightening.

I blocked some addresses for Locus Map, these are in red starting with an x. (185.60.216.15 belongs also to Facebook. The app tells you, who is who.) Crashlytics is a Google owned company (purchased lately), and Amazon web services is used by nearly each and every app for various purposes.

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Hi Walther,

thanks for contacting us. Interesting news for me as well.

Explanation of what I'm aware of:

  • crashlytics: automatic app state & crash reporting system that Locus Map use. One of most useful tools for me to trace unreported bugs
  • x.compute-1.amazonaws.com: we currently use Amazon only for Live tracking service. Were you using LT?
  • locusmap.eu: our homepage from where we download news at app start
  • fra15s46-in-f20.1e100.net: not 100% sure, but most probably should be our Store server, where the app does from time to time checks for news of maps etc.

Interesting/unknown stuff:


  • 185.60.216.15: seems to redirect to Facebook
  • and the Facebook links

App uses Facebook Android SDK for sharing points/tracks and login system, but only in case, users want. Facebook has own "analytics" solution to track app usage. But based on documentation here, this should be disabled in the app since begin.

After some search, I found exactly the same problem already reported on dev forum. This led to the precise bug report on Facebook support. Answer from Facebook stuff is completely out of the initial question and topic is ... closed, sad. Seems that Facebook SDK just do some initialization at start and since some version, there is no chance to disable this behavior. Because we need this Facebook SDK for logins to Locus Store, this is a little stupid situation. Fortunately, Facebook SDK should not have access to any private data, so I'm more worried about increased start time and extra non-needed internet communication.


"Netguard" app does a pretty good job and I'm sure, you will detect exactly same facebook communication in all apps, that use this Facebook SDK.

Sorry to say it, but I do not see any option how to disable this at app start for now.

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Thanks for your detailed explanation.

This is sad indeed.

I also read in some German IT magazine that Android APIs provided by Google as well are infiltrated with Facebook access code which is active by default and need to be deactivated by app developers. Since many developers are not aware of this function, it is active in many cases.


But I wonder anyway whether there is really any benefit in intergrating Facebook into Locus Map.


A growing number of people criticize Facebook's business model and even close their accounts.

I think it is time to think twice whether it is really a good idea to support to these companies which are about to destroy in the long run the internet as it once was intended.

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Hello Walther,

Google API that has integrated this Facebook SDK? Heh, this may be a reason for Facebook to allow some kind of "Initialization on request" and not "Initialization always" as is now. I'll be watching this more carefully.

Opinion on Facebook and it's usage for Locus Map: it is complicated not to use something, so much globally used. It still has some benefits for Locus Map (login & sharing of points & tracks). Anyway, you probably know that integration of Facebook in Locus Map, generally this "social aspect" in Locus Map is really bad. And this also partially reflect my personal opinion on these social networks.

So ... I'm not a big fan on the second side I see benefits here. This means I'll always try to do not force users to use these soc. networks (mainly Facebook), but they will most probably remain part of the app for some time now. If there will be an option in one of next udpates of Facebook Android SDK library to remove this communication with their server at app start, I'll definitely do this! Thanks for understanding.

If you find anything suspicious in Locus Map http communication, let me know. I'll gladly try to explain it.

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