Know your Google security and privacy tools
With Google, you have a variety of tools that can help keep you safe and keep your information private and secure. Here are some of our most popular tools that help make Google work better for you.
Stay secure and private
Once you’ve created a password for your Google Account, we encourage you to add an extra layer of security by enabling 2-step verification. 2-step verification requires you to have access to your phone, as well as your username and password, when you sign in. This means that if someone steals or guesses your password, the potential attacker still can’t sign in to your account because they don’t have your phone. Now you can protect yourself with something you know (your password) and something you have (your phone).
In incognito mode, pages you open and files you download aren’t recorded in Chrome’s browsing or download history. You can also use this feature in Chrome for Android – and Chrome is now the default browser for new Android products, letting you browse the web on your phone or tablet in private. Find out how to access incognito mode.
Google Talk, the chat feature in Gmail and other Google products, allows you to take chats off the record. Chats that have been taken off the record aren’t stored in your or your contact’s Gmail chat history. When you take a chat off the record, a message will appear to you and your contact confirming that future chats won’t be saved, unless one of you changes the setting.
Google+ circles help you manage your friends and contacts. You can put your friends in one circle, your family in another and your boss in a circle all by himself – just like real life. Then you can share relevant content, like Google+ posts, YouTube videos, or Local listings, with the right people anytime you choose.
YouTube was created for people to share ideas with the entire world. But sometimes you might just rather share it with a small group of friends or keep it to yourself. You can do that by choosing either unlisted or private when you upload your video.
See and control your information
On your Account settings page, you can see services and information associated with your Google Account and change your security and privacy settings.
The Google Dashboard shows you what’s stored in your Google Account. From one central location, you can easily view and update your settings for services such as Blogger, Calendar, Docs, Gmail, Google+ and more.
Me on the Web can help you understand and manage what people see when they search for you on Google. It helps you set up Google Alerts so you can monitor if information about you appears online, and it automatically suggests some search terms you may want to keep an eye on.
Account Activity makes it simple for you to review how you’re using Google services while signed in, and make sure only you have been using your account. If you sign up, you’ll get access to a monthly report where you can see things like how much email has been sent and received from your account, the countries from which your account has been accessed, and what the top Google searches from your account have been.
Google Takeout provides you with an easy-to-use tool to download your personal data, like your documents or photos, so that you can always have a copy of it or easily be able to upload your information to another service.
If you’re signed in to a Google Account, Web History helps provide you with more relevant results and recommendations. If you choose, you can delete entries, pause collection or turn off the service altogether. You can do the same with YouTube History.
Manage what advertisers and websites see
Ads help fund many of the free online services on the web you love and use every day. With Google’s Ads Preferences Manager, you can understand how ads are selected for you, control your information that is used to select ads, and block specific advertisers.
Google Analytics generates statistics about visitors to websites, such as the number of page views or times of peak traffic to help website publishers improve their sites. If you don’t want your browser data to be shared with publishers when you visit sites that use Google Analytics, you can install an opt-out.