It seems like location tracking is happening in almost every app you use. The feeling that someone is watching where you are or where you are going can be unsettling. You might just want the peace of mind that no one knows where you really are.
Location services on Snapchat are specifically used to show your Snapchat friends your approximate location. This is so that you can see who is around you, what your friends are doing, and how many friends you have.
However, Snapchat has a feature known as “Ghost Mode” that will allow you to remove yourself from this map.
What is Ghost Mode on Snapchat and how to use it
When you turn your account into ghost mode, Snapchat will no longer share your location with your friends, but only with you. To understand this, here’s a closer look at how Snapchat geodata sharing works.
When you have the Snapchat app open and you’ve enabled geo-sharing with your friends, it will update and place your Bitmoji on the Snap Map to show where you are. It won’t update your location until you open Snapchat.
You can change who sees your general location, and that’s where Ghost Mode on Snapchat comes in. You can share your location with all your friends (only after you’ve added them back and vice versa), individual friends you choose, with whom or just you to share your location in ghost mode.
In Ghost mode, people won’t be able to see you on Snap Maps, which is the world map within Snapchat. Your location will also no longer be updated. However, people can still request your location, but you must first accept the request for your location to be sent.
If you don’t want to appear on Snap Maps, but still want some friends to see your location, selecting the “Select Friends” option when setting up location sharing might be a better option. If you don’t want anyone to see you at all, turn on ghost mode. That’s what it’s for.
How to Enable Ghost Mode on Snapchat
With Snapchat open, follow these steps to enable ghost mode:
- Tap your profile picture.
- Tap the settings icon in the top right corner, which looks like a gear.
- Scroll down to Who can… and touch View My Location.
- At the top you will see the Ghost Mode option. Turn it on and you can set a timer for ghost mode. You can turn it on for 3 hours, 24 hours, or just until you turn it off yourself.
- To turn off ghost mode, tap the same switch.
Alternatively, you can also go to the Snap Map section of the app, tap the gear icon in the top right corner, and you’ll be taken to the same geo-sharing settings screen.
From this screen, you can also prevent certain friends from seeing your location, or choose which friends can see it and everyone else can’t.
In the Location Requests section, you can also choose whether or not to allow friends to request your location. If this is turned off, no one can send you a location request.
How to change location access for Snapchat
If you don’t want Snapchat to have access to your location at all, you can make some changes to your smartphone settings to do so. Here’s how to change these settings on iOS.
- Go to Settings.
- Scroll down to your apps and select Snapchat.
- touch Location.
- Under Allow location access, tap Never.
This will prevent Snapchat from seeing your location and will essentially put you in ghost mode as others will not be able to see your location either. There is another option that can also be useful, setting the exact location.
If you turn this on, Snapchat will be able to pinpoint where you are and show it to others on the Snap Map. If you still want to be on the map but don’t want people to know your exact location, turn this off. It will show you on Snap Maps around your area, but won’t show your exact location.
Using ghost mode on Snapchat
Ghost mode can be very useful if you are uncomfortable with your location being seen by everyone. Since you can also set a timer for ghost mode, you can turn it on and off as you see fit. If you’re more concerned about Snapchat having your location, changing the settings on your smartphone may also work.
Please note that if you do not share your location, you may not be able to access the location filters available in the app. If you want to check if any of these filters are available, you can always turn location data back on for a short period to take advantage of them.
By keeping your location invisible, you can protect yourself from people who might try to snoop or want to determine your location for malicious reasons. Since sometimes you may not know exactly who you add as a friend on Snapchat, this can be very important.