Home Digital Marketing What Google knows about you and how to delete personal data

What Google knows about you and how to delete personal data

I think one of the biggest privacy problems these days is the simple fact that when we sign up for a service like Google, Facebook, Apple and so on, we hardly read the terms and conditions well. If we all read and understood these documents, the subscription rate for the service would drop, at least to 50%. Maybe more? Maybe yes.

For-profit companies make services available to you free of charge and collect usage data. You’re in their house, it’s all theirs. Let’s face it.

Fortunately, legislation (especially European) tries to curb this phenomenon and obliges companies to make available to the end user the tools to modify or delete this information. Or so it should be.

Big G knows everything about you

In this guide, I present the useful links to verify and manage all the information that Google has saved about you : from your market profile to your searches and even your movements. It is possible to know at any time which of your data are in Google’s possession, you can manage them and possibly delete this information whenever you want.

Your market profile

The market profile is a set of information that Google uses to show you the most relevant advertisements based on your tastes, characteristics and preferences.

To find out your market profile based on the data collected by Google, you can consult this link .

In this section you can view the topics that Google believes you may be interested in, and those that you don’t like. You also find information about your gender and age. You can modify or delete all your personal characteristics saved on Google’s servers.

Personal advertising preferences

Many sites that you browse every day track you with Google Analytics, Google’s free web analytics platform. Remember that, if you do not want to be tracked by Google Analytics, you can download this dedicated extension .

To offer website visitors the possibility of preventing the use of their data by Google Analytics, Google has developed a browser add-on that deactivates the Google Analytics JavaScript code (ga.js, analytics.js, dc. js). If you wish to disable Google Analytics, download and install the add-on for the web browser in use. The add-on that disables Google Analytics is compatible with Chrome, Internet Explorer 11, Safari, Firefox and Opera. To work, it must be loaded and run correctly in your browser. For Internet Explorer it is necessary to enable third-party cookies.

Your travels

Every smartphone produced at least in the last 10 years has a GPS receiver, a wifi antenna and one for the data network. With these tools you can be geographically tracked very well, and transmit information about all your movements to Google.

Did you know that Google has the history of your position on the globe, day after day? Do not you believe it? Your “history”, you can find it here , in the tool called Location History .

This function allows you to see the ranking of the most visited places, or see your movements on the map on a daily basis.

Google Location History: track your movements

On the page you will find the link to manage the history of your positions . You can clean up by deleting all Location History data if you want. The location history – Location History can be deactivated through the link “activity management”.

The history of your Google searches

What did you search with your smartphone yesterday on Google while you were on your lunch break? What banner ad did you click on? Google stores your every step on the net, you can check here with the My activities tool .

My activities

This hub – My Activity allows you to control your activities on Google services, cross device and cross application.

The service was created to provide users with a complete picture of the data that Google collects and shares with third parties, giving the opportunity to exercise greater control over privacy through a series of customizable options. My Activity, in fact, allows you to disable or enable the saving of information and to permanently delete those that we do not want to be associated with our profile.

Voice searches and more

As you know, the voice searches you perform with the Google assistant are also recorded and used to improve the response algorithms.

From this hub you can manage voice searches , information on your devices, the history of searches on YouTube and much more.

Download the monthly security and privacy report

Are you interested in a monthly personal recap report on your use of Google services? Here you find the Google Dashboard .

With Google Dashboard you can see all the services you use from Google and what information is saved for each of them. How many emails have you sent? How many Android devices do you have? How many contacts do you have? How many playlists have you created on Google Music? These are just some of the questions you can find answered in the dashboard.

Google Dashboard

Who has access to your data

Have you given SemRush access to your Google Analytics data? Do you grant Search Console data to Majestic? Google has created an area where you can check all third-party applications that have access to your data .

To find out which applications or extensions you have given permission to use your data, click here . From this link you can disconnect all the apps you prefer, in this way they will no longer be able to receive and read information about your assets.

Third Party Applications

You should visit this page at least every six months and remove unnecessary apps.

YouTube viewing and search history

Do you want Google not to store all the activities you do on YouTube in your profile? Follow this link to view the history of your views and searches made on YouTube. You can decide not to allow the saving of the history by deactivating this function, or you can simply check and delete the history at your convenience.

This information is used by Google to offer you more relevant videos and, of course, more relevant advertisements as well.

All your passwords saved

By browsing the passwords.google.com site you can view, manage and delete all the passwords that Google (Chrome) has saved while accessing your websites. Passwords does not save them without your knowledge, it asks you if it can save it. If you accept then it stores them all on this website.

All passwords saved

The service allows you to check all saved passwords, modify and delete them.

Data backup

It is possible to bulk export all your data saved on Google’s servers, data used by all its applications. The backup function is available here . You can select one or more applications for which to export data.

How to navigate invisible?

As you have seen, Google saves a lot of information about you. Your every step on the net is tracked and this data is used by Google and third parties to show you relevant ads and who knows what else. What you can do to limit this situation is to manage your data, delete it. Where possible you can disable, as we have seen, the automatic saving.

To achieve a higher level of anonymity you must try above all to change your habits. True privacy-obsessed NERDs use Tor , an open source anonymous browsing system. It is also important to differentiate the platforms used, for example, for mail and messaging. Leaving everything in the hands of a single player may not be the best choice for privacy (see G Suite & Co.).

Oh I forgot, if you care about privacy, don’t use Facebook. Would you be able?

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