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Data and privacy
The first point of contact for data protection is the "Data and data protection" window. On smartphones, this can also be found in the Google app in the Google account settings. Numerous settings can already be made on this page alone – starting with the history.
When it comes to history, Google differentiates between web and app activities, YouTube and location history. These can be individually deactivated or "paused". Furthermore, the histories can be deleted either manually or automatically. Manually, you have to click on "Manage History" in the individual windows (Web & App Activity, Location History and YouTube History). If, on the other hand, the deletion should take place automatically, Google offers the periods of 3 months, 18 months and 36 months. In addition, after a long wait, the American created the option of deleting the search history of the past 15 minutes. However, this feature is only found on the newer smartphones.
Advertising and personalized Google search
The data mentioned above and other data are used by Google's algorithms to personalize your search results in Google Search. As a result, the pages you see on the first page of search results may differ from those your friends see. To prevent this from happening, the feature can be deactivated on the same page as the gradients. And the same applies to personalized advertising – to be found, as before, under "Data and data protection".
Data from Apps and Services
Since the Android operating system only unfolds its full potential in combination with a Google account, numerous app and service data end up with Google. These can be viewed, managed, downloaded and in some cases removed in the "Data and data protection" settings menu. It also shows what data is available to third-party apps with account access.
Apart from the data protection settings already mentioned, Google created the possibility of directly adapting the three services Google Search, Google Assistant and Google Maps. Some settings overlap, but there are also other customization options, such as settings for audio recordings or contact information.
Google Account: The Privacy Check
It turns out that Google's data protection settings are not exactly a prime example of clarity. Those responsible are probably aware of this. Because they created a tool that automatically checks the most important data protection settings. Users only have to click on "continue" – in a figurative sense – and make the desired adjustments. However, most of the settings cannot be changed directly in said tool. Instead, you will be redirected to the pages discussed above. Just more targeted.
To the Google privacy check
Access to your Google Drive files
More info on WhoHasAccess here
What does Google know about you?
Everyone should be aware by now that Google collects user data. But which ones are they exactly and what does the US company actually know about you? If you have never dealt with the topic of data protection before, the amount of data can be so large that it takes several days to compile the data. However, you can request such a compilation from Google – free of charge. Because the US company is obliged to provide information in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) introduced in May 2018.
Here's how to find out
Google Privacy: Important side note
All of the measures mentioned above only relate to data that is directly linked to your Google account. However, the US data octopus may also store other information, such as cookies in a Chrome browser that is not linked to an account. If you also have multiple accounts, you must disable tracking in each account individually. Because it's not much use, for example, to prevent the storage of location history on an account if another account that is also linked to your smartphone can continue to record it.
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