What does Google Know?

By:   |   June 15th, 2012   |   Google+
Google knows EVERYTHING

Search Engines really are convenient. But are there really no strings attached?

 

Google knows you better than you know you! Or that’s what they say.

 

It’s no secret that Google keep track of what you do online- search something using their search tools and the next day, if you have ads enabled, you’ll see those things you were looking for flashing at you down the sides of the page. Maybe not so irksome, really, but is it really as innocent as it seems?

No, it never is.

 

SEE ALSO: iPhone 5 accidently revealed in WWDC?

 

Google’s Privacy Policy changes were big news just a little while back. The fact that Google collected different areas of your history on their services was different services was no secret, it was seen as an effective way of them being able to deliver a first-class service as well as get something out of it for themselves with their adverts. The combination of their knowledge on all their services

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however, was seen as a little more terrifying. Suddenly, instead of all your information spread out, all of a sudden, in one place Google knows many things.

 

- Your search history on its search engine.

- The videos you watch on YouTube.

- The people you talk to using Gmail and Google+.

- What you look like- Google Images.

And all this information is collated in one nifty package. Still doesn’t sound so creepy? What about this?

 

This is creepy. And we’re not saying that Google doesn’t have a right to the information you willingly input into their programs- that’s all down to you putting it out. But just think. Google probably has perfectly innocent reasons for the collection of your data, and we’re not saying they’ll go on to misuse it. I mean when a company’s motto is ‘don’t be evil’ – well, who better to trust, right?

 

Right?

Wrong.

 

Privacy is something to worry about. For the most part, Google probably won’t use your data for anything insidious. But there are cases of error. Google is not infallible- it can and has been hacked. Google employees are human, and sometimes humans aren’t the nicest of people. Some people, including some (the vast minority, admittedly), like spying on things that have nothing to do with them. And sometimes your search history can come back to haunt you.

 

If this has worried you, then let me first say: calm down. It’s an unwritten rule that once you put something out there on the internet, it’s pretty much impossible to get it back. What’s done is done, there’s no changing that. What you can do to minimise the damage from now on is to be careful with what you do. We realise that in the age we live in nowadays, the lengths some people go to for privacy can be seen as a negative. The standard retort when you go through how important your privacy is with someone who really doesn’t get it, from them: “well I have nothing to hide.”

 

SEE ALSO: iPhone 5 accidently revealed in WWDC?

 

The fact of the matter is, privacy is a right, and until your right to privacy is made illegal, you have the right to protect it.

 

DuckDuckGo, ixquick and Startpage are just three of many private search engines out there. Check them out.

What are thoughts on this? Are you worried now? Be sure to let us know by commenting below and subscribe whilst you’re at it!

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