Is your Google data secure?

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There is a bit of risk whenever we are using any online service. We trust these web companies with our information, which can be very sensitive at times. While still a problem, it’s easily manageable when a smaller app or social network is attacked. But what about the bigger guys?

Take Google as an example. Google now has the most popular browse (Chrome) and mobile operating system (Android) in the world. In addition, we have Google Maps, Google Contacts, Google Wallet, Chrome OS, and the list goes on. Google pretty much knows everything about you, but is it safe to trust them with such information?

According to Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt, the Search Giant is “pretty sure” our data is safe. He mentioned this at a South by Southwest Interactive panel discussion.

“We are pretty sure the information that is inside of Google right now is safe from prying eyes, especially the government. We think your data is very safe.” -Eric Schmidt

“Pretty sure”?

We know the word selection here is a bit worrisome to many of you. Why isn’t Google “completely sure”? Should we at least expect that from a tech giant of such magnitude? Especially knowing how much of our private information they hold?

The fact of the matter is that no system is completely safe. There is always a small risk. This doesn’t mean that Google isn’t striving for keeping your data 100% safe, but such feat could be practically impossible. Google saying they are “pretty sure” your data is safe means they are sure it would be really, really, really hard for external parties to access it.

Past Google attacks

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Google has suffered from at least a couple attacks in the past. Eric Schmidt mentions the Chinese was one of them, in 2010, while the NSA brought the second attack in 2013. Google was working on their new encryption process when the world found out about the NSA’s doings. Of course, the process was sped up, and this is where we are now.

How to keep your data safe

To be honest, there is no real way to stay safe in regards to keeping your private information safe. If you use the internet and save your private info somewhere (whether it’s done manually or automatically), it will be online. Like Eric Schmidt says, information can be used and misused. And even the biggest companies can be attacked.

The safest way to keep your information private is to never allow it to reach the internet. Don’t use a smartphone/computer and stay away from technology. This seems a bit harsh, but it’s the sad truth.

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Now, this doesn’t mean you have to become a hermit. There are measures you can take to keep your information as safe as possible. For example, I tend to use only official apps and services, because their systems tend to be more secure. Even if the apps are not as good as some other third-party alternatives, I prefer to be under the blanket of the original company.

The clue here is to be educated about what’s going on with your information. Try to learn what information your devices and services use, and what they use them for. Be more cautious of what you do online. If you have that private information you would never share with anyone, don’t post it online. Even if it’s in a private folder or system.

In short, this is like with everything else. Your best security system is not the company’s encryption – it’s your own judgement.

[via CNBC]



  • Phaz0n

    I’m not a fan of Schmidt’s word selection AT ALL and I’m not one to go around wearing a tin foil hat, but couldn’t he have chosen different words? Or at the very least, clarify what he means when he says “pretty sure”.

    It’s bad business to state those words if in fact you really are doing everything in your power to protect your users information. You don’t hear Lookout or McAfee go around telling people that they are “pretty sure” their products will protect you. While not everything is fail safe, why not show some confidence?