"... there is a way to track you even if BT is turned off. Apparently, it's done via other installed apps. Meanwhile, at least on my iPhone, when you switch off BT, it's only good for 24 hours, then auto switches back to "on". I've wondered about that sometimes."
You might try turning off Wi-Fi or Bluetooth in Settings, not using swipe down diaganal with iOS. AFAIK Wi-Fi and Bluetooth will then stay off until you turn them back on in Settings. A long time ago, I think, Wael pointed out this change in iOS functionality with some iOS update.
from your OP:
"Even if you did know which companies have access to your beacon data, there’s no way to know what kind of data is collected through the app. It could be your micro-location, dwell time or foot traffic, but it can also include data from the app, such as your name, and your app data can be combined with other data sets compiled about you by data brokers. There is simply no transparency.
To protect yourself from beacons in the short term, you can delete any apps that may be spying on you — including apps from retailers — and shut off location services and Bluetooth where they are not needed. You can also follow The Times’s guide on how to stop apps from tracking your location. For Android users, the F-Droid app store hosts free and open-source apps that do not spy on users with hidden trackers.
Most of our concerns about privacy are tied to the online world, and can feel theoretical at times. But there is nothing theoretical about Bluetooth beacon technology that follows you into retail stores (and other venues) and tracks your movement down to the meter."