google_privacy_update

Google has been making some radical changes of late, from algorithmic alterations to increased socialisation of search. The company’s latest change comes in the form of combined user data and a new unified privacy policy.

From the 1st March Google will combine information that (signed-in) users provide in one service with information from other Google services. In a nutshell, Google will treat you as a single user across all of its products, be it Gmail, Search, YouTube or Calendar.

According to Google this should mean a simpler, more intuitive Google experience and will result in more relevant ads and search results.

What this means

For Google account holders, your information will be shared throughout the Google services you use. This means that Google will be able to learn more about your search habits, for example, Google will be able to figure out what you really mean when you search for homonymous terms such as jaguar, apple or salsa. This will in turn allow Google to serve you more relevant ads.

Google explains; “it’s January, but maybe you’re not a gym person, so fitness ads aren’t that useful to you. We can provide reminders that you’re going to be late for a meeting based on your location, your calendar and an understanding of what the traffic is like that day. Or ensure that our spelling suggestions, even for your friends’ names, are accurate because you’ve typed them before. People still have to do way too much heavy lifting, and we want to do a better job of helping them out.”

google_services

Privacy

Google’s privacy policies have been criticised in the past, partly because there were more than 60 different policies for Google’s products and services. However to reflect its new data mashup and appease web regulators, the new policy consolidates all of those existing policies in to one easy to digest policy.

Google has also trimmed down its Terms of Service (the terms you agree to when you use Google products) which you can check out here.

Too much?

You could be forgiven for thinking that Google is starting to get a little creepy, as it almost certainly knows more about your web habits than you do.

However, if creepy equates to a better advertising service for marketers, improved ad targeting and improved search relevancy, then surely creepy is good?

To learn more about Google’s new privacy policy and terms of service head over to www.google.com/policies.