Change these Google settings to improve privacy

Today we use many Google tools in an increasingly digital world. From the search engine, Gmail for email and Google Drive to work in the cloud, are some of the examples that we can use. This allows Google to collect a large amount of data about us. In that aspect, it knows the searches we do, the web pages we visit and much more. However, we do have some settings that can help us preserve our privacy. In this article we are going to see how to change Google settings to improve privacy.

All the options you should disable

One thing to keep in mind is that after disabling each of these options, you should carefully read what you lose. If you do not take this into account, it is possible that we are left without something that is interesting for us. This can be done both on a computer and on a mobile phone by disabling some options in the Google settings.

Pause voice recording

If you use the Google Assistant, you have to know that it records all our voice commands plus some personal conversations that you may not want anyone to listen to. In that regard, Google keeps a copy of these conversations long after you’ve had them. Google sometimes pays people to listen to those assistant audios so they can transcribe them into text to help improve understanding when we speak. If you want to prevent this from happening, we will follow these steps:

  1. We go to Google accounts and log in with our Google account.
  2. We select Data and privacy, History Settings and we click on Web and app activity.
  3. The option we would have to add is «include audio recordings«.

Once we have disabled this option, audio recordings will not be sent to Google for further processing.

Disable location history

Another of Google’s settings saves all the places we’ve been. In addition, you also know when you visited these places and how long you were there. Out of curiosity, if you want to know the information it has on a map, you can click here. If we do not want the places where we have been to be saved:

  1. We go to the Google account again and log in with our Google account.
  2. Next we click on Data and Privacy, History Settingswe came in location history.
  3. Then we tap on Deactivate.

From this moment Google will no longer save all the places we visit. In that regard, if someone got hold of your Google account password and logged in, they would be able to see all the places you’ve been in the last year or more. If we want this not to happen, we can use two-step verification with Google Authenticator.

Turn off YouTube history

In case you don’t know, Google owns YouTube and keeps track of our activity on that platform. Here would be included what we are looking for and the kind of videos we watch. This information is used to improve Google services, and for example, may include advertisements based on what we have seen. If we want to remove them we will follow these steps:

  1. We click on Google account and log in with our Google account.
  2. Then we click on Data and Privacy, History Settingswe came in YouTube history.
  3. Then we touch on Deactivate.

In this way, we will have deactivated all the YouTube history, and we will even have the possibility of deleting all the history that is already saved.

Turn off Gmail tracking

By using Gmail or other email providers, we can be tracked. So email marketers can use tracking techniques to keep track of our email interactions. In that aspect they can get to find out your exact location, the device you use, the links you click on within an email, the time you saw it and the number of times you have read it.

Therefore, it is another of the Google settings that is a candidate to be disabled. We would do it like this.

  • Open your Gmail app on mobile.
  • Click on the upper left corner, and scroll to the bottom where you must select Settings.
  • Go down to the menu option labeled as Images .
  • Deactivate the option.

You may be interested in learning how to manage bank cards in Google Chrome.

Stop all Google activity history

In the event that we want to achieve even greater privacy, we will follow these steps:

  1. We enter Google account and log in if necessary.
  2. we choose Data and privacy, History Settings and you click on Web and app activity.
  3. Then we press the button that you have marked with a green arrow.

As you can see, in the Google account we have many options enabled by default, which can be detrimental to our privacy. Our recommendation is that you disable all these options if you want to improve security.

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