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Feb 29

How much do you want Google to know?

This is the last day folks, Google’s new security policy kicks off tomorrow 1st March.  Basically this allows Google to gather, store, and use all your juicy information.  And that means all data already collected about you, already stored about you, will be used for your online identity.  If like me, this just feels a little big brother, you can at least wipe some of it clean before it is too late.  After today, opting out, means opting out of Google altogether.

So whats collected then???

If you have logged into your Google account, then started searching around, all those search queries are stored, sites visited, age, gender and your location. More information can be found on Tech News Daily, and in all honesty I should have written this post a week ago to help inform readers if you do want to ‘opt out’.

Now search data in itself can be particularly sensitive for some, particularly sensitive information. maybe you have been sick, health concerns, your religious affiliations or lack of, your location, dreams, aspirations, sexual orientation, age, the list goes on and can sound a little frightful for some.

But from my limited internet research (Daily Mail, DonCrowther.com, Fox Business, ZDNet) there seems to be a quick and simple way to delete your search history. I mean Europe are going mad on privacy, the Centre for Digital Democracy has filed a complaint and wants the Federal Trade Commission (US) to sue Google so it really is all kicking off.

1. Login to your Google account

2. There is a dropdown menu to the right of your name (or your image if you have one) in the top right hand corner of your page

3. Click account settings

 

 

 

 

 

4. Find the ‘Services Section’

 

 

 

5. There is a subsection that reads ‘View, enable, disable web history’ – you need to click the link next to ‘Go to web History’

6. Click on ‘Remove all Web History’

It may not stop them from gathering it, but it will stop them from storing it against your identity, so it will be anonymised.

 

 

I’m interested to know what and how Google users are responding to all of this. Fear, annoyance, ‘who cares’? Or are you just going to change search providers? I mean Google may be the most well known, but it was users who put it there, and users can choose to go elsewhere?

Bing and Yahoo are still out there.

* Image courtesy of NewStatesman