Google disables maps tools in Ukraine used to track troops, civilians

Google has disabled several maps tools in Ukraine that had been used to track the movements of troops and civilians during Russia’s invasion.

Google Maps’ live traffic feature, which flags traffic jams and other road conditions based on speed and location data from users’ phones, could be used by both the Russian and Ukrainian authorities to track each others’ movements, experts say. 

A Google spokesperson confirmed to that the company disabled the live traffic feature for the safety of Ukrainians after consulting with regional authorities. 

As the Russian military lays siege to large cities including Kharkiv and Kyiv and kills hundreds of civilians, the feature could have theoretically been used to target crowded areas. 

Other Big Tech companies have also taken steps they say will help protect Ukrainians from Russia’s invasion. 

Facebook said Monday that it had disabled about 40 fake accounts, groups and pages targeting people in Ukraine that had promoted fake news articles about the war.

Facebook parent Meta, Google-owned YouTube and Twitter have placed restrictions on Russian state media outlets including RT and Sputnik. 

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