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There’s big news coming out of Mountain View as Google gears up to take on the governments as well as rival online storage companies like Dropbox.
In what is being seen as a strong move to thwart Internet censorship and online privacy snoops, Google has started encrypting web searches made out of China. Before you scoff, this kind of security is not just for the paranoid, there are good reasons to encrypt your digital life. The Washington Post reports:
The company says the move is part of a global expansion of privacy technology designed to thwart surveillance by government intelligence agencies, police and hackers who, with widely available tools, can view emails, search queries and video chats when that content is unprotected.
Google added that the move was a response to “revelations of this past summer”, referring to Edward Snowden’s surveillance disclosures. All searches from modern browsers will be encrypted in coming months, the company added. For now, you can rely on third-party apps like HTTPS Everywhere for Firefox, which is also one of the best Chrome extensions.
Meanwhile, Google has slashed prices to buy additional space on its online storage solution, Google Drive. The monthly storage plans now start from $1.99 for 100GB (previously $4.99), $9.99 for 1TB (previously $49.99), and $99.99 for 10TB. By default, you still get 15GB free.
There’s plenty you can do with Google Drive, so these new prices are very tempting compared to competitors. Where it would cost $24 to store 100GB on Google Drive, you would have to pay $50 on OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive) and $100 on Dropbox.
You can sign up for one of these new Google Drive storage plans at the Storage Settings page. If you already pay for storage, you’ll automatically move to a better plan at no additional cost, Google says.