Sunday, 12 May 2013

Privacy Protection from Google - Chris Middleton Leeds

Chris Middleton: I read this great article about how Google stores each search that is performed on giant servers and how the data is cross linked to generated better search results.

Do you know every Google search you've ever performed is stored on the search giant's servers? And that data is cross-linked to your search data from YouTube, Google Maps and any other Google services you use.

With that mountain of information, Google can tell a lot about you: where you live, your hobbies, age, health problems, religion and more. Of course, Google uses that data mostly to target you with ads. If you spend 20 minutes doing research on a gadget, for the next few weeks you'll probably be hounded by ads for that gadget wherever you go online. Because search sites and other Web services have become so ingrained in our daily digital lives, it isn't really an option to stop using them.

However, you can keep a lower profile and put a little more distance between your personal data and Google. To start, you can clear out your Google search history. To see what forgotten secrets lurk in your Google history, go to and sign in with your Google account information. You'll see a list of everything you've ever searched for on Google. If you spend 20 minutes doing research on a gadget, for the next few weeks you'll probably be hounded by ads for that gadget. You can browse through your searches and find them by day or Google service.

Additionally, Google shows you personalized search trends, which can be interesting to look at. To remove an unwanted search term, simply select click the checkbox next to it and then click the Remove Items button. You can select as many entries as you want at a time, or click the checkbox next to the Remove item button to select everything.

Once your information is removed, click the gear icon in the upper right corner dof the page and choose Settings. Here you have the option to turn off your Web history. This will stop Google from recording anything else. There is a catch to all this, of course - your information isn't really gone. Google will still keep your &quotdeleted&quot information for audits and other internal uses. However, it won't use it for targeted ads or to customize your search results.

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