Skip to main content

Why we should all trust Microsoft and not worry about Windows 10 privacy

Windows 10 is the best operating system to ever come from Microsoft. I have single-handedly installed it on many computers for myself, friends and family. I have no trepidation about using it or recommending it.

With that said, I understand both consumers and pundits criticising Microsoft over privacy setting in the newest Windows.

Can these settings be confusing for the average person? Absolutely. Should people blindly trust Microsoft? No, not blindly, but based on the company's track record, it has certainly done enough to earn our trust. If you are using a company's operating system, you have to have some level of faith in that company - otherwise you should disconnect from the Internet or give up on computers altogether. Today, Terry Myerson, Microsoft's Executive Vice President of the Windows and Devices Group, attempts to quell privacy fears regarding Windows 10. You know what? His explanation seems honest and sincere.

"Trust is a core pillar of our More Personal Computing vision, and we know we have to earn it. We've taken time to expand the documentation on our approach today with this blog, and new content we're posting today for consumers and IT Pros, designed to complement our One Microsoft Privacy Policy. We look forward to the next round of questions and feedback on these new posts. I assure you that no other company is more committed, more transparent and listening harder to customers on this important topic than we are", says Terry Myerson.

Myerson further shares, "listening to your feedback has been the foundation of Windows 10, and feedback on privacy is no exception. For our Windows Insiders, we have a Privacy section to our Windows Feedback app so that we can have a detailed dialog on our privacy approach. As an example of direct response to feedback we've received, all Windows 10 customers will receive an upcoming update to family features, with default settings designed to be more appropriate for teenagers, compared to younger children. Additionally, we’re working on ways to further enhance the notifications that kids and parents get about activity reporting in Windows. We’ll also release updates for enterprise customers based on their feedback later this fall".

The Executive Vice President, is saying exactly what consumer's should want to hear - Microsoft realises that trust must be earned, and that it is listening to feedback. In other words, the company is not dismissing the privacy concerns - even if they are slightly misguided - but is instead taking them to heart and improving the overall experience. Clearer and more concise privacy settings will certainly be welcome.

Does Microsoft collect information? Yes. But unlike companies such as Google that text-mines your emails for advertising purposes, Microsoft does not use any of your data or files for ads. For the most part, the company uses data to offer you a personalised experience, and to track bugs and crashes, to improve performance and reliability. In other words, the data it collectes helps you - it doesn't hurt.

Microsoft has been around more than 40 years, advancing the personal computer, and improving our lives for the better; certainly it has earned your trust in that time frame, hasn't it? The company has certainly earned mine.

Image Credit: Manczurov / Shutterstock