When we encounter something we have never heard of, our subconscious reaction is to immediately take out our mobile phone and search for it. Many times these things have nothing to do with us, but embarrassingly, we will receive advertisements related to them before long…
Perhaps Google also realizes that this part of the search data does not make much sense for the establishment of accurate user portraits. It might as well provide users with a way to quickly delete the most recent search base.
To this end, Google recently launched a new feature on the mobile search App: “One-click delete” for the last 15 minutes.
“One-click delete” last 15 minutes
At present, users who use the search app on iOS can already see this new feature: click on the account avatar in the upper right corner, and there will be a new button “Delete Last 15 Minutes” under the “Search History” item.
One-click delete search history in the last 15 minutes Image source: Google official blog
The user clicks this button to return to the search homepage. The application will display a dialog box that says “Deleting the corresponding search history from the Google account”. Of course, if you suddenly change your mind, you can also click the “Cancel” button in the dialog box:
Delete the last 15 minutes of search history demo image source: Max Dalton’s YouTube video screenshot
This feature is very intimate. After all, a considerable number of users do not want Google or other search companies to monitor their every move at any time. Although in the era of mobile Internet, our every move is often monitored, but at least now we have an opportunity to quickly delete meaningless search records.
This feature is now available on the iOS version of the Google Search App. Actually faster than the Android version! Google also revealed that this feature will be launched on Google Search for Android later this year.
However, on the web page, users can also manually delete search records in the last hour.
On Android and the web, users can also set to automatically delete search records older than 3 months, 18 months, or 36 months.
Shared users block usage records
Google launched the My Activity (My Activity History) tool in 2016, which allows users to more simply and intuitively view their use records in most of Google’s mainstream products, and to delete those who do not want to save them or do not want to Google Watch’s usage records and data.
However, this feature creates another layer of trouble for users of family sharing accounts and shared devices: any device that has logged in to the same Google account can access My Activity to view usage history.
In order to solve this trouble, Google decided to add a “lock” to My Activity: Every time you access My Activity, you need to enter a password or perform two-step verification before you can view all usage records. (Of course, the user can also decide whether to lock this lock or not.)
My Activity verification lock function Image source: Google’s official blog
With this function, users no longer need to worry. Children may see the browsing history of their parents, and the hidden dangers of checking records between partners without having to hand over their mobile phones…
Privacy-oriented design concept
As we all know, Google’s products, services, and operating systems have always been criticized for privacy. These new features are also part of the privacy improvement plan launched by Google at this year’s developer conference I/O 2021.
Google claims that from now on the company’s products will adopt the “Privacy by Design” (Privacy by Design).
For example, starting this year, all usage data of all users will be automatically deleted after 18 months by default. For another example, Google now directly puts the various switches and settings of user privacy in a more obvious place of the product. In addition, now on the Google Search App, users can directly enter the Incognito Mode by long pressing the avatar in the upper right corner.
One key to enter the incognito mode. Image source: Google’s official blog
In the incognito mode, the user’s browsing history, Cookies and website data, content filled in web forms, and temporary authorizations from third-party websites will not be saved.
At the same time, Google is actively developing some more cutting-edge technologies, such as Federated Learning in the field of machine learning. This technology was originally designed to solve Android mobile phone users using machine learning models locally. The design goal is to achieve joint modeling on the basis of ensuring data privacy and security and legal compliance, and to improve the effect of machine learning models.
Now, some of Google’s mobile products and functions use federated learning technology, which can allow users to still enjoy the experience innovation brought by AI without extracting user data to the maximum extent and ensuring privacy.
Image source of federated learning model example: Google’s official blog
Of course, as a company with advertising as its core business model, for Google, the more data is definitely the better.
However, a key reason behind Google’s efforts to improve privacy in recent years is that the level of regulation of data security and data privacy in the United States, Europe, and even the world has become increasingly high. There is no doubt that big technology companies like Google will no longer have the “barbaric growth” soil in the future digital world.
In Silicon Valley, Apple, which has always regarded itself as “privacy first” in recent years, has also been criticized in terms of platform policy and user privacy. Some people even speculate that the many improvements in privacy by major American technology companies , including Google and Microsoft , are actually a mockery and demonstration of Apple behind them.
What do you think of the new feature “one-click delete search history in the last 15 minutes” and Google’s various privacy improvements?
Posted by:CoinYuppie，Reprinted with attribution to:https://coinyuppie.com/erasing-your-internet-traces-has-never-been-easier-2/
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