How to delete your private Google info before The Big Change

Come March 1, Google will be joining all of the search data it has on you — yes, you! — into one tidy place. That means the things you Google, the stuff you share on Plus and the robot toy videos you watch on YouTube will all inform who the search/advertising giant thinks you are on the Web.

If you want to know more about the coming privacy changes, Google's official wording is here. The announced change to Google's privacy policy has been controversial in more ways than one (and even landed the company in the hot seat before Congress), but, to the company's credit, it's been very forthcoming with additional information. Maybe not clear, but forthcoming.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation's Eva Galperin lets you know how to keep your batch data out of Google's soon-to-be-omnipotent suite of services with four quick steps:

  1. Sign into your Google account.
  2. Go to https://www.google.com/history
  3. Click "remove all Web History."
  4. Click "OK."

Boom. You're done.

"If you have several Google accounts, you will need to do this for each of them," Galperin warns.

Update: CNN Tech's Dog Gross has some more tips here, and for more than just Google's ad search opt-in/out.

For folks who don't mind flying a little fancier, see here for a more detailed approach to managing your Google data (provided, in fact, in Google's official statement linked above). That'll give you a little more control over what you share with the company.

Will Google's privacy changes ruin your life if you don't do anything? Probably not. That depends on how you use the company's various sites, including search, Google+, YouTube, Blogger and so on. There are plenty of reasons why someone would want to remain anonymous, however — for health reasons you'd rather keep private, for instance, or private matters regarding one's sexual leanings — and for people who wish it, the above will get you sorted.

EFF, via Boing Boing

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