Google to Auto-Delete Search, YouTube, and Location History

Google has introduced some new features to enhance user privacy.  Google has decided to auto-delete user data including search history (on web or in-app), location history, and voice commands collected through Google Assistant or devices like Google Home. 

In a blog post, Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai said that “As we design our products, we focus on three important principles: keeping your information safe, treating it responsibly, and putting you in control. Today, we are announcing privacy improvements to help do that.”

When a new user switches of location history for the first time, Google will set auto-delete to 18 months by default. If you are old user then your location history and web & app activity already enabled. Google said that they will not change the settings but says it will keep reminding you about the new auto-delete controls.

This new tool also applies to Google-owned YouTube. But in YouTube auto-delete feature will delete the history after 36 months from when a new user or someone turns on history for the first time. Existing users will have the option between 3 or 18 months of auto-delete option. Google said it wanted to hold on to YouTube records for longer than other internet activities, as this would help its algorithms for a better recommendation. 

This new auto delete feature will not apply to the logs of Photos, Gmail, and its Drive cloud-storage facility. CEO Sundar said the post, “As always, we don’t sell your information to anyone, and we don’t use information in apps where you primarily store personal content—such as Gmail, Drive, Calendar and Photos—for advertising purposes, period.”

Google also making it easier to turn on incognito mode. Google will now allow users to go incognito on popular Google apps by just long-pressing on your profile picture. The feature is available on apps like Google Chrome, Search, Maps, and YouTube.

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