With its faster, slicker and new added features like virtual desktops and functional tablet support, windows 10 is an incredible improvement over windows 7 and windows 8. However, like Apple and Google, Microsoft too has been continuously involved in collecting large amount of personal data from the users. This type of practice has raised many serious concerns regarding privacy act.
By default windows 10 provides the right to pass on your loads of data to its own servers and uses your bandwidth for Microsoft’s own purposes. Despite the accolades Microsoft has earned for finally doing its job right, Windows 10 is currently a privacy morass in dire need of reform.
While its not much of a concern to Microsoft, its time to take matters into your own hands to protect your identity from the possible perils. This tutorial guide will help you to access, disclose and preserve your personal data, including all your contents like your contact emails, and private communications. Take a peek at our listed six methods to resolve your privacy issues:
Method 1: Avoid using express setting during initial setup
During Windows 10 installation, Microsoft will encourage you to accept its “express settings“. Choosing express settings will automatically enable your private data sharing with Microsoft. We recommend choosing customize settings instead. Once you have selected “Customize settings”, it will present you with some toggles concerning your personlization and location. I would recommend to turn each of them “off” like in the figures below.
Unless you trust Microsoft’s judgment with your private information, it’ll be good to disable all those. And finally, the toggle where it reads “Send error and diagnostic information to Microsoft” might look harmless. At times when something went wrong, that information could include loads of sensitive things. Like if you were writing some important scripts and your computer crashed, it’ll get uploaded. So, leave it enabled if you want Microsoft to take care of it, but I usually turn it off.
Method 2: Check the operating system
When you’re using windows 10, it is capable of sharing the various types of information with Microsoft’s servers. Such as:
- Your location: Windows 10 can determine your location to help you with some actions like changing your time zone. It also records your device location, history. Go to settings > privacy > location to control the following:
- You can use the master switch on top of the page to disable all locations for all users of your current device.
- If your location is on then you can still turn it off from here “Location service on/off”.
- And this will allow you to setup a city, zip code or region so the apps can deliver relevant contents “General location”.
- And by clicking set default to open map app and specify the location that you want windows to use when more precise location isn’t available.
- Now at “location history” you can click clear to erase your saved history for devices with windows 10. If you see the location list, on the bottom settings > privacy > location page will allow you to disable access to that data.
Method 3: Try options of files and settings
Saving files to cloud through onedrive will be the option given to you after logging into your Microsoft account.
- Also syncs some settings to onedrive while using windows 10, which allows you to have similar settings on other multiple PCs like same saved passwords, desktop bg, also some other personalized settings right after you logged into that account.
- No settings will be synced on the condition of logging in with other accounts. But if you use your account, you can have an option to turn off syncing or removing some settings from your sync list.
- And to do that you should check on your settings > Account > Sync your settings.
- If you don’t log into your onedrive, it won’t save any files because onedrive is an opt-in service to which you can always revoke anytime.
- In Windows 10 there’s a feedback mechanism which is called diagnostics data as telemetry that is upgraded to Microsoft regularly. So, if you’re aware of your personal information’s leakage, you should check on your settings > privacy >feedback and diagnostics, where you have to change your Diagnostics and usage data settings to basic.
- There are some privacy options within other apps too. Like your mail, music, photos, calendar etc. Most of them will give you options to switch on or off, which will disable all your apps. It also works on your camera, microphone, and call history radios etc.
- You’ll also have the option to disable by access on per app basis to disabling geofencing your location if it’s enabled.
Method 4: Turn Off the Secret Settings
- The subset of windows 10’s privacy settings are the only install settings, which occupies many pages and dialogue boxes across the user interface.
- After you turn off your (send error and diagnostic information) you’ll only turn it down from full to enhance.
- And to decrease the amount of info that sent to Microsoft, you should go to Start menu > settings > privacy > feedback and diagnostics section.
- You can reduce the amount of data that has been sent to Microsoft by simply going to setting > privacy > diagnostic and usage data to its basic mode.
- You can turn off sharing your account info so it won’t give direct permission on app installing which will not let any app to see your account info. Go to settings > privacy > account info and turn it off.
Method 5: Use a Local Account
- If you don’t use the Microsoft account on windows, then it’ll protect you from many of Microsoft’s attempts to collapse local remote distinction in privacy policies.
- So, use your other accounts like gmail or yahoo mails instead.
- Here you can go to settings > accounts > your account and use your local accounts
Method 6: Don’t Use Edge or Cortana
- These are basically designed to record as much your personal information as possible to customize the user experience, take annotation and learn about you.
- Instead, you can continue using your other browsers like chrome, Firefox or other internet explorer.
These lists of privacy issues are strongly recommended to secure your personal information where there are many other options too. Hope you like our suggestions and recommendations. Stay safe, stay protected. And please read our other articles for various tech supports you’re hassling with.