Let’s face it, Google is the ultimate Big Brother.
Facebook is the current scapegoat for all our paranoia about technology, privacy, data collection and social media. But they’re just the first mega-tech company to have something go wrong in a big way. They won’t be the last.
If you think Facebook is bad, have you checked out what Google is up to?
Google knows and stores an insane amount of information about you that you probably don’t know about. One of the most alarming is that it constantly tracks your location and travel times between locations.
Google also logs your hobbies, career, gender, age, interests, your possible income and even your possible weight. Easy there, Google.
Google also knows all your YouTube history, which means they have a pretty good idea of your religious and political leanings. They have your emails, too. Even deleted ones.
The good news — if you can say that in this situation — is that you can log in to your Google account and view your personal data and tracking history, and supposedly even delete things you don’t want King Google to keep in their filing cabinet dungeon.
You can even download it all as one giant file. Just don’t try to print it, because it will be several million pages.
A spokesperson for Google told NBC News that people should “be aware of their online privacy choices and review them regularly.” Right, because the burden is on you to track down what every tech company knows and stores about you and figure out how to turn it off. Do you have time to do that “regularly” for every app you use? Me neither.
The director of the nonprofit Center for Digital Democracy in Washington says Google has “built a global commercial surveillance machine that rivals what the NSA or other intelligence agencies can gather in order to become the leading global digital advertising company.”
Some say handing over our personal data by the bucket-load is the price we pay for free web services.
Problem is, Google has the world over a barrel at this point. What are we going to do, stop “Googling” stuff?
Leon Neal/Getty Images