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Thread: Google search/Gmail privacy alert

  1. #1
    Flashaholic* PhotonBoy's Avatar
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    Default Google search/Gmail privacy alert

    I've just become aware that Google has added a 'feature' whereby you can recover your history of Google searches that you've made while you're logged in as a Gmail user. You can find out more at labs.google.com.

    If you're really concerned about your privacy, you probably don't want to be logged in to Gmail while you're doing searches in Google. Your search history may come back to haunt you.

    Overnight, I've gone from being a Google/Gmail evangelist to a nervous privacy advocate. Everyone has skeletons in their closet.

    Perhaps Google should change their mantra from 'Do no evil' to 'Do no stupidity.'

    I think Google should do more to explain where they intend to go with the information they gather about their users.

  2. #2
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: Google search/Gmail privacy alert

    Agreed!!!

  3. #3

    Default Re: Google search/Gmail privacy alert

    You should not only log out from gmail but also block all cookies from Google, to help prevent your searches from being correlated when you're not logged in.

  4. #4
    Flashaholic* vontech's Avatar
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    Default Re: Google search/Gmail privacy alert

    You can disable the search history feature in My Account in Google.

    But I have always been clear that Google was "watching" your searches. That's how they generate the little ads you see on the right of each Google search page, and that's how they make their money.

  5. #5
    Flashaholic* PhotonBoy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Google search/Gmail privacy alert

    I'm off to log in and disable the search history feature and block Google cookies. Thanks for the tips, guys.

    =========

    Update: I'm still digging into this and learning about it. Here's a link that gives full information about this new Google 'feature':

    http://www.internetnews.com/ent-news...le.php/3499316

    =========

    Here's Google's 'My Search History Help' page:

    http://www.google.com/searchhistory/help.html

    =========
    4. How is my search history stored?

    My Search History stores your history on Google servers, which enables you to view your history from any computer.

    ...

    6. Is My Search History always on?

    My Search History saves information about your activity on Google, including your search queries, the results that you click on, and the date and time of your searches while you're signed into your Google Account. If you aren't signed in, this information won't be added to My Search History. Note: you can also remove items from My Search History or pause this feature indefinitely. To learn more about removing your search history, please read the My Search History Privacy FAQ.

    =========

    Well, after all that, I logged in and paused the Search History function; I'll never turn it on again. I think it should be turned off by default. I'm sure that Google is still storing the history, they'll just not show it to me if I ask.

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