WhatsApp is a free mobile messaging app, which allows its users to send text and voice messages, share photos, videos, and documents privately, and make voice and video calls. The app relies on mobile data or WiFi connection to perform all these messaging features, without the need for any subscriptions or monthly fees. With all these fabulous features, no wonder it has gained rapid popularity. It now serves over 2 billion people across 180 countries.
As with any other online messaging platform, one constant concern for users is privacy. One might ask: “How secure is WhatsApp in protecting personal details and information?” Users who are new to WhatsApp  may be happy to learn the app has a pretty advanced security feature, as it provides end-to-end encryption. This means that only the sender and receiver can have access to messages. However, tracking one’s location can be another issue.
It’s easy to track people through WhatsApp and there are numerous ways to do it. The simplest and most transparent way is via the “Share Location” feature in the app. There are, however, more stealthy methods that let you avoid detection.
The first and the easiest way to discover someone’s location through WhatsApp is the “Share Location” feature, which rolled out in late 2017.
This method enables you to share your location in both one-on-one messages and group chats. Once you share your own location, the person or people you are speaking to can easily do the same. Many people use “Share Location” to coordinate group events or meet-ups. To use this feature, you need to enable location permissions for WhatsApp in your mobile settings.
To share your location, follow the following steps:
Launch WhatsApp. Start a chat with the person or group you are hoping to track. Next, tap the “Paperclip” icon on the right side of the text field.
WhatsApp will open up a menu of available attachment types. Tap the “Location” icon. Allow WhatsApp to access your phone’s location.
You will then see a map. Tap the “Share live location” button. You will see a warning informing you that all participants will see your location.
Select the period over which you’d like to share your position. 15 minutes, 1 hour, and 8 hours options are available.
Add a comment if you want to, and then tap the “Send” button.
Everyone in the conversation can now see your position on the map for the rest of the share period, whether you’re actively using WhatsApp or not. You can stop sharing your location by tapping the “Stop sharing” button in the chat. For this method to work, the other person or persons have to agree to share their location with you. If they do, their name will appear on the same map.
You can always disable WhatsApp’s location permission’s in your phone’s settings at any time. Just go to your phone’s Settings, then select Apps and Notifications. Tap Advanced, then App Permissions. Select Location, and turn off WhatsApp.
If you want to track someone down and you don’t have your phone nearby, you can always use the good old Command Prompt. Keep in mind that this method only works for the online version of WhatsApp.
- Launch WhatsApp Web on your computer.
- Open a chat with the person you’d like to locate.
- Close all other apps, programs, and processes that might be running on your computer as they might interfere with the tracking process.
- Simultaneously press the “Control”, “Alt”, and “Delete” buttons, which launches the Task Manager.
- Next, press the “Windows” key and the letter “R” at the same time. This will launch the “Run” function.
- Type “cmd” in the text field and press “Enter”. This will launch the Command Prompt.
- When the Command Prompt launches, type “netstat-an” in the command line and press the “Enter” button.
- Command Prompt will show you the IP address of the person you’re chatting with. Write it down.
- Go to https://www.iptrackeronline.com  and enter the address in the search bar.
- Hit “Enter” and they will appear on the map.
If the above methods don’t appeal, you can always try using tracking links. This method might require a bit more work on your side, but it is effective even if the person you’re tracking has declined your “Share Location” request. Read on to find out how to locate a person via tracking links.
- First, you should make a free web hosting account on a server that offers free hosting. My3gb, Hostgator, and 000webshot are popular options.
- Once the setup is done, log into the hosting account and go to the “File Manager” section.
- Download the “Tracking ZIP File” ZIP file to your computer.
- Extract the file. You will see three files in the folder.
- Next, upload those files to your hosting account. You should upload them to the file manager’s root [public_html] folder.
- After you’ve uploaded the files, send the link to the person you want to locate. It might look like this: techhacks.my3gb.com.
- All info about the target person’s location and the device will be stored in the log.txt file found in your root folder.
If you are not a fan of the hands-on approach, you can always use an online service or app to track the person you’re chatting with. One such service is Inspectlet . While made primarily for tracking website traffic and creating heatmaps, Inspectlet can be used to locate the people you talk to on Facebook and WhatsApp.
Let’s take a look at how to track people with Inspectlet.
Open your browser and go to Inspectlet’s official site and create an account. After that, log in to your account.
The app will provide you with a tracking code that you can paste in the WhatsApp chat.
When the person you want to locate taps and opens the link, Inspectlet will send you their location and other info.
When to Use These Methods?
If you want to track your friend or partner to provide them with real-time directions, it’s best to start by sharing your location with them. However, if you need to track down a rebellious teenager, you can do so with some of our more complicated methods. Your target may never find out that they’re being tracked. Consider this note of caution, though. The third-party location tracking methods are not very easy to perform, and you need to be very tech-savvy in order to work your way out and avoid falling into any internet scams.