Google launches auto-delete tool for personal data

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Google wants to make sure customers have an even easier time managing and deleting the private data it has on them and has, for that goal, announced a new tool.

The tool is basically an auto-delete control which works like this: users choose a time limit for how long they want to keep their activity data. That can be anywhere between three and 18 months.

Any data that is older than this timeframe, gets deleted automatically, and gets deleted on an ongoing basis.

Location History and Web & App Activity are among the first features to get this new tool. Google says it will roll out “in the coming weeks”, with other features probably getting the tool at a later date.

“We work to keep your data private and secure, and we’ve heard your feedback that we need to provide simpler ways for you to manage or delete it,” Marlo McGriff and David Monsees, Product Managers at Google, said in an announcement.

“You should always be able to manage your data in a way that works best for you -- and we’re committed to giving you the best controls to make that happen.”

Even before GDPR, and especially after GDPR, large tech companies like Facebook and Google have been heavily scrutinised on how they handle user data.

Google has been relatively proactive, adding new features and tools to allow users more control over which data gets stored and which gets deleted.

Image Credit: Flickr / janneke staaks