“I use 'View on Galaxy Map' when looking for abandoned factions ships that need to be retrieved.
If a former faction member is still on board, does this count as tracking someone? ”
Assets only show their complete location in inventory if they are in space, on the ground/uncarried, or on another asset that you/your faction owns. This is the intended function.
The features mentioned on the Sim News are bugged in that they will show locations even if they do not display in normal inventory, allowing you to "track" someone who has picked up an item of yours, or spawn an item/NPC, and discover your own location if you have been trapped somewhere.
If you are using these functions on assets you can see a full location for, then you are using them correctly. If you are using them to find assets you are not being given the full information on, then it's an exploit.
“What if the item is a tracking device? ”
Tracking devices have a status of not yet implemented, so using them in this way is an exploit and not their intended function.