Your pets are showing strangers where you live

Posted at 11:04 PM, Feb 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-18 10:35:25-05

Your pet is showing complete strangers where you live, down to the exact house.

It’s not some weird feline Facebook, it’s

The website is a silly concept with a serious message.

It’s about creepy stalkers, stranger danger and inadvertently plastering your personal info on the web.

We knocked on a few doors to see if the website is accurate. It is.

In Chula Vista we knocked on Don Bandel’s door, looking for his cat, David Bowie, and his dog, Ninna Simone.

Bandel had no idea Bowie and Ninna were on the website.

“Weird,” Bandel said.

A few blocks away we knocked on the door of another cat listed and found Matilda, a nine-year-old tabby, and her owner Daniel Ratner.

“It’s kind of creepy. It’s a little creepy. I don’t know that I like it too much,” Ratner said.

Owen Mundy created the website.

“I came up with ‘I Know Where Your Cat Lives’ one day when I was photographing my daughter and I was uploading pictures with Instagram,” Mundy said.

He noticed there was a map showing where he took the photo.

“They were essentially giving, they still are, giving away the geographical locations of the photograph their 300-million users are uploading, everyday,” Mundy said.

Mundy said it’s not just Instagram, it’s any app that takes photos.

“When it’s on my phone you can see where they took the picture. I didn’t know it was public though,” Ratner said.

In fact, all photos you take on your smartphone have a digital location stamp embedded in it, unless you have turned location services for your phone’s camera to ‘off’ or ‘never.’

But the location stamp is still in photos you take using an app, like Instagram.

Those bathroom selfies? Cute photos of your new baby? Might as well give strangers a map to exactly where you are.

“Now we are really oversharing, because we are oversharing where we live,” Bandel said.

Think of this as 'I Know Where Your Kid Lives… Your Wife Lives… Where You Live.'

Mundy said you need to go in your phone and adjust the setting in each photo-sharing and taking app manually, turning the location services off.

“Everyone’s so worried about the NSA watching them. Nobody is watching them. They are putting the information out,” Bandel said.

If you have an Android phone, click on this link for step-by-step directions.

How to turn off geo-tagging for photos you take on your iPhone:
Settings – Privacy – Location Services
If you want to really go dark, turn Location Services to 'off.' No one can find you. This will turn off all of your app location services, but you will not be able to use GPS or apps like Waze.
If you use GPS, or Apps like Waze and Yelp to find things around you and/or you want people to track your approximate location in case of an emergency, leave Location Services on.
Scroll down to the apps.
Set Camera to 'Never.'
Set Messages to 'Never.'
Set Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, etc. to 'Never.'
You can set some apps, such as Yelp and Waze to 'While Using the App,' but remember, if you take a photo using the app, it will have a geo-tag.
To remove geo-tags, or EXIF data, from photos you already took click here.