Technology

Here’s how you can get rid of search history held in Google's servers

My account page in a user's Google account.   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

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Deleting browsing history does not delete all the information that Google possesses relating to a user’s search history that is stored on the servers, according to cybersecurity firm vpnMentor.

Users can do nothing to convince corporations to stop harvesting their data, but can use some ways to keep sites from collecting the data in the first place.

There is tonnes of data stored remotely on Google’s servers to create an advertising profile of a user, vpnMentor said.

But now Google is providing the option to separate private data from the services they provide, which can help limit the ways in which that data is used.

This option is different from the regular way users delete browsing history in their browsers.

If a user wants to see what their search record looks like, they can go to takeout.google.com, select all Google services, and choose how they want to receive the archive. It includes search history from every device a user used with a Google account, and GPS tracking of all those devices.

By connecting to a VPN, users can be sure that their internet service provider (ISP) doesn’t see anything they don’t want them to.

To clear history in any or all Google services, users can type myaccount.google.com, click on their profile followed by Google Account. From there, click ‘Data and personalization’ on the left side of the screen, or click ‘manage your data and personalization’ on the main page.

Then, they should scroll down to the box, ‘Activity and timeline’ and click on ‘My activity’. From the menu on the left side, select ‘Delete activity by..’ and similar to browser history, user can delete all of their Google history or just part of it.

They can even set a custom time frame, or delete activities on some services such as YouTube.

Additionally, users can limit the types of data that Google associates with their account in the future. Under ‘data and personalization’ there’s an option of ‘activity controls’ which shows several settings like ‘location history’. Users can click on the entry status to pause it, in case it is on.

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Printable version | Jan 22, 2021 7:05:37 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/technology/heres-how-you-can-get-rid-of-search-history-held-in-googles-servers/article33029685.ece

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