Google collects private data silently even when you remove your SIM card, turn the Mobile Data and WiFi off and also when you set the Airplane Mode on.
Surprised? Read on.
Which private data does Google collect?
Here are the three main types of data Google collects:
Things you do
When you use Google services — for example, do a search on Google, get directions on Google Maps, or watch a video on YouTube — they collect data to make these services work for you. This can include:
- Things you search for
- Websites you visit
- Videos you watch
- Ads you click on or tap
- Your location
- Device information
- IP address and cookie data
Things you create
If you are signed in with your Google Account, they store and protect what you create using their services. This can include:
- Emails you send and receive on Gmail
- Contacts you add
- Calendar events
- Photos and videos you upload
- Docs, Sheets, and Slides on Drive
Things that make you “you”
When you sign up for a Google account, they keep the basic information that you give to them. This can include your:
- Email address and password
- Phone number
How does Google collect private data?
“We use the information we collect from all of our services to provide, maintain, protect and improve them, to develop new ones, and to protect Google and our users. We also use this information to offer you tailored content – like giving you more relevant search results and ads.”
Watch this video to understand how your private data reaches Google servers.
Google runs its majority of business for providing you the best search experience. This is only possible if they have minute details about you whether you provide those or not; they will collect it silently because you agreed it to be collected.
Google has designed its systems to get your private data whether you are connected to internet or not or even whether you are logged in to Google account or not. Google systems are designed such that your private data stored locally in your devices when you are offline (removing your SIM card, switching mobile data and wifi off, switching airplane mode on) reaches their servers automatically once you come back online through those devices for any reason whatsoever.
Why does Google collect private data?
Google uses private data to make their services faster, smarter, and more useful to you.
- Google Maps gets you places faster
- Google autocompletes your searches
- YouTube finds videos you want to watch
- Chrome completes forms for you
- Google Search helps you find your own information
- Google Assistant can help you get things done
By providing your private data to Google, you get a personal search experience which helps in increasing your productivity at work or at home.
Your Private Data – To provide or Not to provide?
This is a debatable question. Some may agree while some may not. You can decide to agree and provide if you have been enjoying the best personal search experience. But if you are now scared and would not want to share your private data with Google then do one thing – stop using Google tools and services!
Finally, you must have now realized that you are not a ‘customer’ for Google but you are their ‘product’.