Google privacy settings are vitally important in our daily life and routine. If you are a daily user of Google’s services, such as Gmail, YouTube, Maps, and Play Store, there could be a significant amount of data traffic from your devices to Google’s data centers. Although Google has a solid protection system, it’s still likely that others can still see your personal information. You should also adjust how Google collects and manage your activity and personal information. Here are things to do in order to optimize Google Privacy settings :
How to optimize Google Privacy Settings
- Voice and audio activity: Every time you say “Okay Google” or “Hey Google” on your smartphone or smart speaker, this activity will be logged into the Google system. You can go to the My Activity webpage to review your voice activity. You will get actual recordings and transcriptions of what you said. If you disable this logging of this feature, Google may have a problem improving its speech recognition ability. So, if you communicate with Google’s voice assistant regularly, you may want to keep enabling this feature, to ensure higher accuracy and better reliability. If not, it’s safer to disable it.
- YouTube Search and Watch History: Every time you search for something on YouTube and watch a video, your activities will be logged by Google. This information could also be reviewed on the My Activity webpage, to see whether you had rather embarrassing YouTube activities in the past. If you disable this logging feature, Google will not be able to recommend videos based on your personal preferences and viewed videos. If there’s nothing you want to hide about your past YouTube activities, you can keep this feature enabled.
- Ad personalization profile: Google observes your online activities to track your location and personal preferences, which are useful to determine the most relevant advertising messages. Go to Ad Settings webpage to know what Google really thinks about you. If you disable the ad personalization feature, you will get generic ads that may not be relevant to your needs. If you don’t plan to buy anything or you don’t have trouble finding your referred websites, you should disable it.
- Web and app activity: Go to Google’s My Activity webpage and you can see what you have searched throughout Google’s services. If you disable it, you won’t be able to review your past activities and searches. If you regularly review your past activities, it is a good idea to choose to delete automatically your online activities after three or eighteen months.
- Location history: Google may track your location through the IP address and GPS coordinates of your mobile device. If you go to Maps, you are occasionally asked to write a review of places you visited recently. Go to the Maps Timeline page to manage location history. If you don’t want to be constantly monitored, you can choose to disable location history tracking on this page. But you may not be notified of heavy traffic ahead when you are driving due to a lack of tracking. Alternatively, you can choose to enable data collection of location history only on certain devices, such as your smartphone or car’s Android-based navigation system.
That’s a quick and easy guide on how to optimize Google privacy settings and keep what’s important to you from peering eyes. There is simply too many websites and companies that would steal your data.
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