Another Google privacy problem? See if you are at risk
It seems that never a week goes by without some company being in the news for exposing people’s privacy or browsing habits online. This is a big topic of concern for consumers and something which people rightly take very seriously. It would seem that Google are back in the news again on this subject for all the wrong reasons, and our latest article will take a closer look at the problem, whether you are at risk and what you can do.
So what is happening?
The problem comes with the Google Chrome browser – particularly on smart phone devices. A report claims that very sensitive and personal data is at risk of being disclosed, and people are being urged to delete the browser from their phones to stop this from happening.
It follows the news that Facebook is doing something similar, but the report claims that whilst this organisation is collecting data for its own purposes, Google is actually giving it away to virtually anyone, who can access data about your browsing habits and history, so it is claimed. According to the report, when the browser is located on mobile devices, it allows device sensors to be activated which leads to this data being accessed.
From what it is known, the likes of Apple disable access to these kinds of device sensors, but it is claimed that Google actively encourages it as part of its recommended settings. As Apple devices seem covered, the problem therefore would seem to be on Android devices and it has since been communicated that this loophole can be closed by disabling the ‘stock browser’ which resides in the settings area. Failing that or if people can’t find or do it, they are simply advised to just delete the browser completely in order to protect themselves. You would think that if you were browsing on incognito mode in Chrome, you would be protected from this? Don’t bank on it, as incognito appears to be no barrier either. This has led many to ask what is the point of incognito and question some of the other benefits that browsing in this mode is supposed to provide.
Google have been approached and interviewed about this subject and have stated that they take users privacy very seriously, and allow users to block these motion sensors, which in effect, means that there isn’t any problem at all. The trouble with this is that that fact needs to be widely known and communicated, and as always in these situations, there are many many more people that don’t know about it than do.
What other types of browsers exist?
It’s hard to think beyond Google Chrome as a web browser, but there are many others which do exist and are equally as popular. On phone devices, safari is the obvious one which springs to mind and works well. If you have windows, Edge seems to be the most stable and the one that operates hand-in-hand with the system. Don’t forget the likes of Firefox, Opera and Brave also.
However, questions around privacy and security can remain on all of these browser types, whether they are on desktop or mobile. The extent to which personal security is known about can sometimes be hard to find, which is Google’s main problem in this instance.
From reading this post, most people will at least now know what to do and how to protect their personal browsing information. Google really could do without these problems and types of negative press – especially around subjects so sensitive as privacy, security and personal data. Google constantly has a reputation to uphold, but it seems that with increasing problems lately such as these, this standing is taking something of a knock just lately.
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