Google collects this data from its users

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A research conducted by Vanderbilt University on Google search engine’s data collection activity has found that the internet juggernaut collects two-thirds of data through passive means from its users. This includes information from apps running in the background of Android devices, Youtube, Google Photos, Maps, Chrome browsers, and even in incognito browsers.

Therefore, to all those who thought that their browsing sessions in the incognito mode were safe from spying eyes, here’s an update- nothing goes concealed from the eyes of the big brother( Google in this case).

Researchers from the said university have found that Google collects data in active ways when its users sign into an application. And will indulge in a passive data collection if users go incognito.

The study which was made public on Tuesday has confirmed that Google links the browsing history from incognito browsers to a specific user based on certain parameters- such as search content driven from an IP address on a consistent note, location, device which is being used and OS. Also when a user logs into a Google account while a private browser is open, the cookies which are left behind still have the ability to track down the user.

And if a user chooses to close down the private browser and then re-opens the browser to sign into an application, then all the data previously logged onto the PC will get erased.

Coming to the data which is accessed on a mobile phone running on Android OS, the study proved that Google tracks down the info to the accounts which are signed-in onto the device.

In an experiment conducted by the university researchers, it was found that the total magnitude of data communicated to Google servers from an iOS device is found to be approximately half of that from the Android device.

That means the probability of Google tracking down a user on an iOS device is half of that from the android device.

Google apps such as weather forecasts, temperature trackers, and commute trackers on Maps app can also leak a large proportion of data than we ever thought. The info is stored on the servers to their respective accounts as a part of ‘web and app activity feature’

A report published in Associated Press has confirmed this news and alleges that Google has violated user privacy by monitoring and storing its user movements even when the location history was turned off and so has to face a lawsuit in near future.

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Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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