Google: How much does the company know about you?


We all know and use Google services. The largest internet company provides a huge range of services, many of which are free. Gmail, Google Drive, Google Allo and a list of others can all be used for free.

Free; Not exactly as each of us using the company offers valuable information that Google can use for advertising. It is also known that the lion's share of the company's profits comes from advertising.Google

You've probably noticed it already: you use Google Search to search for a car of interest to you and suddenly, as a matter of magic, ads from local car dealers start to appear.

How much does Google really know about you? The answer may surprise you.

Your online footprints

The most obvious Google tracking can be found at Google Web History, which records your previous searches on all the devices where they are connected to your Google account. Web History is supposed to benefit you because it allows Google to tailor future search results to your preferences based on your history. But your search history is also very useful for advertisers.

Equally important information comes from the history of the pages you visit through Google. The company collects information whether you are logged into a Google account or not. This is accomplished by using tracking cookies as well as information from AdSense and Analytics, other Google services. The company can learn which websites you like, how many of them you visit, how much time you spend on them and more.

The profile created by this information is yours again, in the sense that it is based on information such as IP address, browser analysis and the plugins it uses. So instead of collecting names and physical addresses, the company continues to gather information to create a unique profile through your activities and preferences.

And this profile is used to display relevant ads. You can see all information that the company has collected for you from Google's ad settings, a page that also allows you to opt out of specific types of ads. You can also use the tool Panopticlick of EFF to view the information used to create your digital footprint.

Let's look at a Google search URL

https://www.goοgle.gr/search?q=google+url&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&client=firefox-b&gfe_rd=cr&dcr=0&ei=IJ8KWv6kIcLw8AeD0abwBw

I searched for the "google url". The search term is listed in the link above, along with the following information (including additional company coding):

UTF-8: the font encoding I use
Client =Firefox my browser
gfe - Google Front-End
rd - Redirect
cr - Country
ei - Engine ID
gws - Google Web Server

Other characters are parameters and cookies that are sent through the browser.

So all together gfe_rd = cr means Googlegle front and redirect country, while ei is the engine id followed by a random font number that refers to the cookie. The? Gws_rd = ssl ”that we sometimes see in search URLs means that the Google web server redirects to SSL.

YouTube

YouTube also collects information. The world's most popular video website keeps track of your video viewing history, subscriptions and searches to help Google better understand you. All of this history can be viewed at Google control panel - you or anyone else has access to your account.

We should mention that there is nothing in your online activity that is unknown to Google. None of the browsers protect you completely. Only with more advanced measures, such as the use of a VPN and the Tor network, can protect your privacy.

Google+

Facebook's appearance revealed that there was a much easier way of collecting data. So came Google +. The user profile created by the Google track piece, now you create it yourself! Of course, it can again be used to better target ads.

The entry of your birth date, your interests, your location, your contacts, the posts you post and the photos you upload are recorded.

gmail

You will probably not be surprised to learn that your Gmail account is linked to the Google data collection. The company collects a wealth of information that it could not otherwise have. Google scans your inbox for metadata that may indicate your preferences. The company can also compare the information it has from your e-mail with other available information available to you. to better understand you.

Google Drive

Whether Google reads your files on Google Drive is unclear. The same terms of service may apply, given the company's unified privacy policy. The techniques used to collect information are unlikely to be very different from those used to collect information from Gmail. However, so far, Google has not confirmed or refused to collect data from the drive.

However, the company's terms of service give Google the right to "use, host, store, reproduce, modify, or create derivative works" in anything on Drive. In short, Google can't steal your content completely, as it reports explicitly that you belong - but has the ability to read your data if it so chooses.

Android

Your internet traces can be tracked regardless of the device you use. PC, tablet, smartphone - it doesn't matter, especially if you have a Google account. If you are currently using an Android device, you should definitely have a company account.

Android device owners obviously provide some very useful data that indicates not only where they live and their habits but also the sites they visit most often.

You can see the information gathered by Google for you with the tool Location History. You can even delete your history if it exists, though it is unclear whether your company allows you to permanently delete it from its internal database.

Useful information stored by Android is not just your sites. Think of every device with Google's operating system collects wireless networks, passwords, and data from some third-party applications. All this is stored on Google's servers.

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Integrated profile from Google

As a whole, the information collected by Google can create a complete profile. This profile includes everything: emails, documents in Drive, browsing history, videos you watch on YouTube, WiFi passwords and more.

Google's interest in the company is just to show ads. So in this respect, an accurate profile can be considered good for you as you only see the ads that interest you.

Do you trust that your data is only used to show ads?


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