Today, Facebook has become the number one service to share with friends, family, colleagues and even unknowns. And it’s not new for Facebook to expose your personal information to your friends specially when it’s about location information. Facebook has a habit of encouraging users to share their location to friends as much as possible. Am I wrong? And their messaging apps for Android and iOS are no exception.

Messenger sends location

In Facebook Messenger and Facebook app for Android and iPad (iPhone/iPad), your location will be automatically sent to the recipient whom you are sending message. This is because location sharing is turned on by default in these apps. This a big privacy issue no one wants their location to be shared with friends or strangers unless it’s needed. Whenever you are chatting with someone with location sharing turned on, the recipient of the message will get a map link to your current location along with the chat text. In latest versions of Facebook Messenger, the recipient will get a “Direction” link to that map. That means, your friend or the stranger will not only know your current location but also able to get to your precise location using the direction feature.

So it’s sure you don’t want Facebook Messenger not to share your current location to friends while sending texts in chat. Though it is turned on by default, you can easily turn off location sharing using app settings. I have shared the procedure for both Facebook Messenger and Facebook app for both Android and iOS. It is as easy as disabling Facebook Messenger chat heads on Android. Though you can disable it while chatting, by clicking on location icon right beside message field, turning it off from global settings makes the setting permanent.

How to disable Facebook Messenger location sharing by default

On any Android Phone/Tablet:

On Facebook Messenger app

1. Open up Facebook messenger app. Tab on Gear icon to access settings. Scroll through bottom until you find the label “Location.” Notice, here it says, “New messages include your location by default“. Remove the tick mark to turn off location sharing by default as I did:

Turn off location sharing in Facebook Messenger

2. That’s it. Messenger will no more send your location to your friend unless you turn it on.

Note: After you turned off location sharing, if you want to share location with specific friend, clicking on location icon in chat field will trigger the messenger to turn the location for whole app as it was.

On Facebook app

If you are using the normal Facebook app to chat with friends rather than Messenger app, you might want to turn off auto location sharing here too.

1. Open the Facebook app. Go to App Settings.

Access Facebook app settings

2. In App Settings, find the label “Messenger Location service“. Tap on it and you will be presented with a pop-up. Remove tick mark next to “Location is on” as I did:

Disable "Location is on"

3. You are done.

On iOS (iPhone/iPad):

Messenger app and Facebook app

You can disable location sharing for both Messenger and Facebook at one place.

1. Go to Settings. Then in Privacy. Tap Location Services in privacy page. In Location Services page, disable location access for both Messenger and Facebook app or either of one.

Disable Facebook location service on iOS

2. Yes it’s done.

So, now you are preventing people from viewing your location. While social networks are a great role in our life, there’s nothing alternative to being concern about privacy. Let us know about your opinion.


Jaber is a Programmer and Tech Enthusiast Geek from Dhaka, Bangladesh. He is the founder and Chief-Editor of TechGainer. While he is away from his keyboard, either he's fishing or messing with wildlife. In case, you can contact him at rijans[at]techgainer[dot]com.