Google and how to protect your privacy
I wrote this article to the sole purpose of information sharing. The aim was helping people understand what information they are sharing online at all times.
Did you notice it?
One of my friends, who we’ll call “Souriant” wrote something as facebook status. In the line of “I searched for something on Google and saw an ad the next day on the thing I searched”.
You may have noticed the same thing ! I am here to show you how it works, and to give you the tools to protect yourself (in case you want to 🙂 and your privacy matters to you)
“This information is only visible to you”
You will see this line on nearly every account page relating to your privacy.
Is it now? Yes, this information is visible to you and Google’s whole 2M+ ad network and partners. It is their way of making money.
The ads that companies like Facebook and Google will show you are contextual ads. They use among other things, a technique known as “behavioral targeting” .
Simply put, the ads you are shown are based on your browsing patterns. The aim is to show you the content that you want to see. Based on what you are searching on Google, the videos you are viewing on Youtube, etc…
What if you don’t wish to see ads at all?
Google Account Privacy
You can check your gmail/google account privacy by clicking on your profile icon badge –> My account.
By selecting “Personal Account and Privacy”:
Manage your Google Activity
Perhaps, the most relevant of all privacy settings is your Google Activity. See for yourself.
Web & App Activity – Google search History – DISABLED!
This is your saved search history, everything your searched for on google which is saved and used to show the “relevant ads”.
All your search history, well organized by date/time.
To disable or pause (in Google’s language), just move the slider to grey.
Delete your whole Google search history
Further, you can go to “Manage Activity” and delete all your activity.
Location History (Where are you now? )
Exactly as it sounds. Every google map search is stored here. The places you like to visit or would like to visit.
Device Information (S8 or Iphone X )
The devices you use, are you a Samsung, Huawei, android guy or are you more of an iphone guy ?
This is a neat piece of information that can help them show you the latest phones, maybe experiment a little bit.
Show an iphone to an android guy and see if he likes it (Why not? )
Voice & Audio Activity (OK Google)
Basically, every time you say OK Google, you are being recorded.
The goal? Improving speech recognition.
Youtube Search History
The videos you are looking for on youtube are monitored and stored.
Youtube Watch History
Adding insult to injury, what you search is not enough.
We need to see what you watch.
Ads Personalization (What do you like Friend?)
Topics you like
To show you the most relevant ads, we need to know what you are interested in.
Every youtube video has a category, and by using this category, they are able to pinpoint what you like and what you don’t.DISABLED!
Ads opt out (Found 134 opt-out requests)
By default, you will opt-in to these ad-providers, based on your interests.
Finally, All ads slain.
If you are serious about your unwanted ads, you should definitely install AdBlockPlus!
Hope you have enjoyed this content, in case of any suggestions, feel free to write a comment and I will update the post.