Thursday, January 26, 2012

Google announces privacy changes across products. And you can’t opt out.




Google announced yesterday that starting March 1st, they will require users to allow Google to follow and track all their search history and activities of Google services to get a "better picture" of how people use their products. Including Android phones.

This is some of their services:


Gmail
Google Earth
Google Maps
Google Wallet
Google Books
Google Docs
Google Calendar
Photo hosting
Blogger
YouTube
Chrome


Think about it. How is a website like Google or Facebook, one of the most profitable businesses in the WORLD making their money when their services are free?
They sell your info.

They have been doing this for a while but this takes it to a new level. Consider this bit from The Washington Post

"The move will help Google better tailor its ads to people’s tastes. If someone watches an NBA clip online and lives in Washington, the firm could advertise Washington Wizards tickets in that person’s Gmail account.
Consumers could also benefit, the company said. When someone is searching for the word “jaguar,” Google would have a better idea of whether the person was interested in the animal or the car. Or the firm might suggest e-mailing contacts in New York when it learns you are planning a trip there."

Wtf? Invasive much? That is no excuse to force people into agreeing with this.

But hey that's my opinion.




So what can you do about this?
  • Switch to Firefox and get the addons Flashblock, Adblock Plus, and Better Privacy for starters.
  • Start using other search engines like Startpage that uses blocks out all identifiers and uses Googles powerful search database.
  • Use "burner" accounts for everything, keeping your real accounts for when you need them.
  • Drop gmail and use places like Hushmail
  • Get a different phone like a Nokia N8 or N9 for you smartphone types or the good old Feature phones with integrated twitter, facebook, web, email, music etc with needing a google account.
This is just a few to get you started. You can also check out THIS for information on staying hidden online via proxies and VPN's.


============


I wont know what it is all the sudden with governments and companies wanting to snoop and pry into out daily lives but its getting pretty out of hand.


"Google reports that it complied with almost all (93%) of the 5,950 requests for user information in the United States. In all, the law enforcement authorities demanded access to more than 11,000 accounts"

Important:
ACTA - Worse then SOPA/PIPA

How to bypass Internet Censorship SOPA/ACTA

57 comments:

  1. I'm surprisingly okay with this, I'm not saying it's right, but as long as it only affects you in the way that ads are distributed I don't think it's that bad.

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  2. One day they are going to google themselves right out of my life!!

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  3. I don't know if you have a twitter account but I tweeted this post. Here is the link if you want to retweet it and if you follow me, I follow back.
    https://twitter.com/#!/CandidaJourney/status/162153665161986048

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  4. Funny you posted this as I have been thinking about it alot these past few days. I don't like it one bit. I appreciate your suggestions as to how to try and maintain some privacy with all of the integration going on via the Internet and social networking sites. I will definitely check out your links.

    Thanks so much for stopping by and becoming my 700th follower. I am definitely following you back -- you have an interesting and helpful blog.

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  5. Very interesting......thanks for the info! I tend to ignore the crap I get so this post is very helpful to me.

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  6. It is bad enough fishing out real emails what with numerous promotion emails and spams and on top of it all, now THIS!

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  7. Sounds pretty interesting, great blog!
    +Follow

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  8. It doesn't really bother me, Data is the future of the world and I'd rather see an ad about a video game I might buy than for makeup or womens clothes. It makes sense in more way than one.

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    Replies
    1. If you allow them to then sure. If not then no, its invasion of privacy.

      Delete
  9. Funny how Google was all gung-ho about stopping SOPA then does something like this. :( Thanks for telling us though.

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  10. I heard about it already awhile ago. Doesn`t really bother me that much either. I think it`s rather good, because then we could see ads we are actually interested of.

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    Replies
    1. Its an invasion of privacy if I want my info private and im forced to divulge it.

      People can go to jail for that you know. But google gets free ride

      Delete
  11. I have a Mac, can I still use Firefox? Sigh...I need a computer guru to have on call at all times. Horrible with IT stuff.

    I'm so against all this invastion of privacy stuff. What if I google something like serial killer b/c I want to learn about the Zodiac and then end up on some kind of crazy flagged listing??? Horrible!

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    Replies
    1. Chances are we are all on some "list" lol but I agree. I had to write about several killers for my psychology class. I wouldnt like it if that got confused for me wanting to be one.

      Anyway im not good with macs as I hate them but here

      http://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/Installing%20Firefox%20on%20Mac

      Though I think on a amc you are better off with safari

      Delete
  12. I think I might switch to fire fox. Thanks for the info! I just noticed it today when I went to google!

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  13. hmmm.... can't say that i am surprised really...

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  14. if the data is stored locally on my computer where I can edit and change it, I'd consider being okay with it, but letting them hang on to that data... no way

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    Replies
    1. Let alone making you accept it. I can as well remove block and edit, but about the hundreds of millions of people who cant? Shame on you google

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  15. Fascinating. And it might be the consumer's fault. They want free services. As if there were such a thing.

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  16. I don't do anything online that I'm embarrassed about or feel the need to hide from anyone, so if Google can take that info and target better advertising for me, I'm all for it.

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    Replies
    1. Still doesnt mean it should be forced on anyone.

      Delete
  17. sounds very interesting, thanks for sharing and i appreciate your suggestions.

    plus: thanks for the follow, following back.

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  18. Google just lost one user and Yahoo got a new one.

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  19. MY GOD STOP THIS PISS I'M BEING PISSED ON BY LAW MAKERS

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  20. eh, i figured they've been doing this for a while anyway. can't say i'm surprised

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  21. I can't believe Obama and his socialist buddies are allowing this to happen. This isn't America anymore- we're living in the Socialist states of Obamacare!

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  22. Wait, so they track everything you do on chrome now? That is some bull... Newest firefox user right here.

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  23. It's the end of the world as we know it, and I don't feel fine

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  24. Felicitaciones!!! super interesante tu blog!!

    Te visitaré seguido! saludoss!!

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  25. Informative info. Will start using hushmail from now on. thanks!

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  26. I've got Firefox, I use Google mostly for only Blogger and some YouTube, don't use my GMail a whole lot. It wouldn't be too bad if this wasn't forced upon. Some people might like the customized ads and stuff, but I would rather not have that info of mine lying around. That's just asking for a massive security breach and having a lot of information out there for anybody to take and use for their own purposes.

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    Replies
    1. Exactly. Nothing i safe online. Just look at Wikileaks with their documents, or Anonymous hacking group or the PlayStation Network incident or the Xbox Live exploits. The list goes on and on

      Delete
  27. Aloha, and thanks for the comments - and the heads up!

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  28. Hey,

    Just got you to Triple Digits in Followers :) And Matt Drudge once had only 100 followers, too.... Good Luck :)

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    Replies
    1. Woooo 100 finally, thank you! Will do.

      Delete
  29. It's definitely a worry.
    I already block all ads.

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    Replies
    1. Like wise. Easy to do in Firefox and by other means

      Delete
  30. Interesting and worrying !!!! Love your blog. Cheack
    Out mine:)

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  31. In one hand, I can see how it is more convenient to group it all and share information between services. In fact, I assumed Google already did that internally.

    The problem is no opt-out. For a company whose motto is "Don't be evil", shoving anything down people's throats goes directly against that. Things work fine now, why change? Just another way to keep us on a leash, with our permission.

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  32. Don't they say they won't sell your personal info? Oh, it's not personal info if it's on the net, is it?

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  33. you can also use a program called ccleaner (its free)and reset your IP daily ;)

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  34. I just saw the video on there privacy policy on youtube

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  35. I'm horrified at how many people are okay with this. I'm glad you left that offbeat comment on my page because if you hadn't I wouldn't have gotten the info about how to get around Lord Google and his minions. Thanks, I have to move things around before March 1st then. I'm going to bookmark this post.

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  36. If you sign into g+ you are forced to agree with it...

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  37. I just came over to say thanks for visiting but instead I got wrapped up in this post and spent the last two hours researching google and looking into getting a hush email account and trying to figure out my 5 words for my passphrase and trying to remain logged out and calm... lol... I'm okay now... sort of.

    So... does this just mean that we can still search via google but that it's best to not log into your account... ie, I obviously have a google account because I have a blogger account. I also use youTube, etc.

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    Replies
    1. Correct. If you browse privately and block your cookies and use proxy or whatever it is you do, along with not being signed into any of your Google accounts (they are all linked) then you are fine. But if you are singed in then no matter what you block or proxies you use, your history is still saved and tied into your account.

      Because we all have blogger, I would suggest using startpage.com for your searches (uses Google engine but privately) for your searches.

      Delete
  38. I love Google and their products but this is just way over the line. What the hell happened to privacy? I may have to start private browsing soon if this keeps up.

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    Replies
    1. I have a guide on how to do that. It is definitely recommended

      Delete
  39. Sounds pretty bad. Its like some fake excuse to provide spammy unwanted ads, when in the same time, they are scanning all you are looking for in the net. What if you are searching for torrents, what advertisements are they going to send you then? The grip is slowly pressing...

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  40. I just switched to chrome a few weeks ago -_-

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  41. Going to start using StartPage from now on, thanks.

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  42. I was reading about all the changes earlier today. Not cool. Thanks for this post.

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  43. What ever happened to give & take?

    Take care,
    Mike

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