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Home / Tips and Tricks / What Google knows about you could be a shock. To manage or delete your activity

What Google knows about you could be a shock. To manage or delete your activity



  Tal Oppenheimer, a Chrome product manager, described changes to Chrome privacy at the Google I / O Show.

Tal Oppenheimer, a Chrome product manager, described new privacy features on Google I / O earlier this year.


Google / Screenshot by Stephen Shankland / CNET

Google collects a lot of information about you – maybe more than you think. Google remembers every search you make, and every YouTube video you watch . Whether you have an iPhone ($ 699 on Amazon) or an Android phone, Google Maps logs wherever you go which route you take to get there when You arrive and when you leave – – even if you never open the app . If you really look at everything Google knows about you, the results are amazing – maybe even a little scary. Luckily, you can do something about it now.

As public reliance on major technology companies continues to be weakened by data leakage and data breaches, Google has set up a privacy hub that allows you to access, delete, and restrict the data that Google collects about you , However, navigating the various settings can be confusing, and it's not always clear what you give Google permission to do. Worse yet, if you make a change that limits how much or how long Google logs you, Google warns that its services will not work so well without unrestricted access to your data. How true that is is not clear.

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Sarah Tew / CNET

Despite Google's efforts to increase transparency, recent revelations that the search giant is secretly handing private user information to third parties have cast doubt on public confidence in the company's Google homepage (99 US dollars at Walmart) and Google Nest lines of smart speakers are trying to accommodate microphones and cameras in the most private environment – at home.

We will eliminate the confusion and show you how to access the private data that Google has about you, and delete some or all of your data. Then we'll help you find the right balance between your privacy and the Google services you rely on by selecting settings that restrict Google's access to your information without compromising your experience.

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Find out which private information Google classifies as "public."

Google may have your name, a photograph of your face, your birthday, your gender, other email addresses you use, your password, and your phone number. Part of it will be listed as public information (of course not your password). So you can see what Google shares with the world about you.

1. Open a browser window and navigate to your Google Account page.

2. Enter your Google username (with or without "@ gmail.com").

3. Select Personal Information from the menu bar and check the information. You can change or delete your photo, name, birthday, gender, password, other emails, and your phone number.

4. If you would like to see what information you have publicly available, scroll down and select Go to About me .

5. You can then resign and make changes. There is currently no way to mark your account as private.

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Google has customized the Mobile Privacy and Desktop Privacy Dashboard.


Google

View the records of your online activity on Google.

If you want to see the mother mode of data collected by Google, follow these steps to find, verify, delete, or delete it automatically after a period of time.

If you want to have more control over your data, but you still want Google services like Search and Maps to personalize your results, we recommend that you set the automatic deletion of your data after three months. Otherwise, you can delete all of your information and set Google to stop tracking you. For most everyday tasks you do with Google, you will not even notice the difference.

1. Sign in to your Google Account and select Data & Personalization in the navigation bar.

2. Scroll to Activity Controls and select Web and App Activity to see a list of all Google-logged activities.

3. Disable both check boxes if you want Google to stop tracking your web and image searches, browsing history, map searches and directions, and interactions with Google Assistant. Otherwise, go to step 4.

4. Then click Manage Activity . This page displays all the information that Google collected about you from the activities listed in the previous step until the day you created your account.

5. To set Google to automatically delete this type of data every three or every 18 months, select Select to delete automatically and select the period in which you feel most comfortable. Google will delete any recent data that is older than the time period you specify. If you select three months, all information older than three months will be deleted immediately.

6. If you prefer to manually delete a portion of your entire activity history, select Delete activity by in the navigation bar and select either Last hour Last Day Anytime or Custom Area .

7. Once you have selected an auto-delete setting or manually selected which data to delete, a pop-up will appear asking you for confirmation. Select Delete or Confirm.

To make sure your new settings have been applied, return to Manage Activity (step 4) and make sure whatever is there (if any) you've deleted everything it should not be anything.) Only goes back the three or 18 months you selected in step 5.

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Access the Google record of your location history.

Unlike Web and App Activity there is no setting to automatically delete location data after a certain interval. Location data is an all-or-nothing offer: Google either logs your location information and you need to manually delete it, or you stop using Google Maps. There is a third way to use Google Maps in incognito mode. This will prevent search queries or routes from appearing in your Google Account location history while they're on. Learn how to view and delete your location history.

1. Sign in to your Google Account and select Data & Personalization in the navigation bar.

2. To view a list of all location data recorded by Google, navigate to Activity Control and select Location History .

3. If you want Google to stop tracking your location, clear the check box on this page.

4. Then click Manage Activity . This page displays all the location information that Google has collected about you as a timeline and on a map, including the places you've visited, the route you've taken there and back, and the frequency and date of the visits.

5. To permanently delete the entire location history, click the trash can icon and select Delete location history when prompted.

To make sure your location data has really disappeared, start again with Activity Control . After Manage Activity in sentence 4, make sure the timeline in the upper-left corner is blank and there are no points on the map that indicate your previous locations.

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Angela Lang / CNET

Manage your YouTube search and watch history.

Of all the personal data Google collects, your YouTube search and watch history is probably the most innocent. In addition, the ability to allow Google to track your YouTube history may be the most obvious benefit. It helps YouTube find out what kind of videos you like so you get more content that you like.

Get an overview of your YouTube history and delete it manually, or at intervals of three or 18 months. As with Web & App Activity we recommend that you set YouTube to delete your data every three months. That's just enough to update YouTube's recommendations, but it does not leave behind years of personal data.

1. Sign in to your Google Account and select Data & Personalization in the navigation bar.

2. Scroll to Activity Control and select YouTube History to see a list of all Google-recorded location data.

3. If you do not want Google to stop tracking your YouTube search and the entire history, uncheck the box on this page.

4. Then click Manage Activity . Here's a list of all the searches you've ever done and all the videos you've ever seen.

5. To set up Google to automatically delete your YouTube Date every three or every 18 months, select Select to automatically delete the date, with which you feel most comfortable.

6. To delete part of your entire activity history, select Delete activity from in the navigation bar and select either Last hour Last day [19659036] All times or Custom Area .

7. Once you have selected the data you want to delete, a pop-up window will appear asking you to confirm. Select Delete .

To make sure your YouTube data has really disappeared, start Activity Control in Step 2 and then Manage Activity in Step 4 Sure, whatever is there ( if you have deleted everything, there should be nothing), only the three or 18 months you selected in step 5 go back.

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Another important thing regarding your privacy

Be warned, just because you set Google so that your online or offline activity is not recorded, it does not necessarily mean that your data for Google is complete have locked. Google has admitted that it can track your physical location, even if you disable location services using information from the wireless network and other wireless signals near your phone. Just as Facebook has been guilty for years, Google does not even need to be signed in to track you.

Not to mention that there are sometimes apparent contradictions between Google's privacy statements. For example, Google recently admitted that it scanned your Gmail messages to make a list of your purchases even though it was publicly stated in a 2018 press release, "To be perfectly clear, no one reads on Google Your Gmail, except in specific cases where you ask and give us your consent, or where we need to do so for security purposes, such as investigating a mistake or misuse. "Google may not mean" nobody "to" nobody. " "but in times of an ever more powerful AI such a distinction is practically controversial.

It is ultimately up to you to protect yourself from invasive data practices. With these 8 smartphone apps you can manage your passwords and hide your browser data as well as perform some other duties related to privacy. If you have Google Home smart speakers in your home, learn how to manage your privacy with Google Assistant . A US Senator has proposed a bill to criminalize executives of technology companies such as Mark Zuckerberg for data breaches . California is already one step ahead and has already passed legislation giving users more control over their private data . The law will enter into force on 1 January 2020.

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