Big Brother Google Knows Where You’ve Been

Footnote to an earlier posting. Here is a link to a blog posting over at PC World which may cause some of the keener users of Google to rethink how much it tracks our activity.

And by the way, litigators should remember to add this to the checklist demands for electronic discovery. The trackprints of where a user has been could be really valuable.

Of course if you think it’s cool to see everything you’ve done, there are tools for that too.

Here is Google’s own description:

With Web History, you’ll be able to:

* View and manage your web activity.
You know that great web site you saw online and now can’t find? From now on, you can. With Web History, you can view and search across the full text of the pages you’ve visited, including Google searches, web pages, images, videos and news stories. You can also manage your web activity and remove items from your web history at any time.

* Get the search results most relevant to you.
Web History helps deliver more personalized search results based on what you’ve searched for on Google and which sites you’ve visited. You might not notice a big impact on your search results early on, but they should steadily improve over time as you use Web History.

* Follow interesting trends in your web activity.
Which sites do you visit frequently? How many searches did you do between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.? Web History can tell you about these and other interesting trends on your web activity.

Perhaps Simon’s paranoia was justified.

Here is what it looks like courtesy of Gobala Krishnan in KL:

Google History


  1. Google has long said they collect this information; now that it can be made more available the question about privacy becomes louder. Here is an article from last year that talks about these concerns: