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What is Geolocation tracking and how to use it
What is Geolocation tracking and how to use it
A
Written by Arick Disilva
Updated over a week ago

Introduction

With the Geolocation monitoring feature, you will be able to track where your employees are working from. This might be useful if you have a remote, dispersed team or have field workers who work on different job sites. You can use the information for security, scheduling, payroll, and compliance purposes. For example, check for attendance, identify if an employee is working from home, track when a user is traveling abroad, etc.

Enabling/Disabling Geolocation Monitoring

Windows

On Windows, the Geolocation feature can be enabled from Monitoring Settings > Monitoring Profile > Geolocation.

Mac

On Mac, you will first need to activate the feature by granting the geolocation_permissions permission to the Teramind Agent. Please check out the How to configure macOS permission settings article to learn more. Once the feature is activated, you can enable/disable it from Monitoring Settings > Monitoring Profile > Geolocation.

Geolocation Report

You can view the users' geolocation activities from the BI Reports > Geolocation report.

FAQ

How precise is the location tracking?

Teramind uses the Windows/Mac Location Services to track geolocation. The accuracy of the location information depends on various factors such as the source hardware, region, environmental conditions, etc. For example, GPS-based location tracking can be accurate to within a few meters depending on the sensor and satellite signal. Wi-Fi positioning can result in a few meters to a few hundred meters of accuracy. Location tracking over Cellular network based on a single cell tower can place the device in a broad area, but it cannot pinpoint it. As the device connects to more towers, the accuracy improves. The range can vary from a few hundred meters to a few thousand meters. The least accurate method is IP-based tracking.

Some countries might also have restrictions on location reporting by satellite or other devices, limiting the accuracy of the location data.

In our limited tests, the best precision we found in city bounds is about 300 meters.

The Geolocation Report has an Error radius column to show the accuracy of the data.


Does the geolocation tracking work when the user is offline?

Yes. The Agent will continue to track geolocation even when the computer is offline. The data will be uploaded to the server when the user comes back online.


Will the user be tracked if the computer is locked?

  • On Windows, if the RECORD LOCKED SESSIONS (Monitoring Settings > Screen) is turned off, geolocation tracking will not track the user when their computer is locked.

  • On Mac, geolocation will be tracked irrespective of the RECORD LOCKED SESSION setting.


Can a user disable the geolocation service from their computer?

Teramind Agent will periodically check if the Location Services is disabled and will automatically enable it if needed.


Can a user tell if their location is being monitored?

By default, Teramind Agent will hide the Your location is currently in use icon on the Taskbar Notification. However, this is not a full-proof method. A user with the right tool and knowledge can find out if they wanted to.


What data sources does Teramind use for location mapping/reverse-geocoding/geofencing?

Teramind uses two external services to map coordinates to locations:

Teramind can also use a data source of your choice (provided it's compatible) or build custom mapping solutions on request.


How does Teramind detect changes in the location information?

Teramind Agent tracks changes to a geolocation event when:

  • The user's work state changes. For example, the user starts or stops work, resumes, or pauses work, goes offline, returns online, etc.

  • Geolocation change event received from Windows Location Services.


How does Teramind measure distance or distinguish two places in the same location (e.g., same city)?

The default value for the distance threshold is 250 meters.


Is there any API documentation for this feature?

The API is currently being developed and will be released soon. When the API is released, the documentation will be published on https://www.teramind.co/apidoc.

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