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From the moment Microsoft launched Windows 10, the company has faced criticism over the privacy (ar lack of it) of Windows 10 users. Now, ahead of the release of the Windows 10 Creators Update, Microsoft is addressing those privacy concerns.
Windows 10 collects a lot of information about you and what you do while you’re working on your PC. Some of this data collection is necessary for apps to function properly, but the rest is completely unnecessary. So much so that the Electronic Frontier Foundation wrote a scathing editorial eviscerating Microsoft.
Microsoft’s New Windows 10 Privacy Policies
Today, Microsoft is attempting to address these ongoing privacy concerns. In a Windows Blog post, Terry Myerson, Executive Vice President of the Windows and Devices Group, set out Microsoft’s “continuing commitment to your privacy with Windows 10”.
First, Microsoft has launched a new web-based privacy dashboard. This lets you see what data is being collected without you having to hunt for it. You can already use it to clear your browsing history, location data, and previous searches. And Microsoft is promising to “add more functionality and categories of data over time”.
Secondly, Microsoft is simplifying the setup procedure that determines what data Windows 10 will collect. The options will be clearer, and the descriptions of what they actually mean will be fuller and more accurate.
Thirdly, Microsoft is reducing the diagnostic data collection levels from three to two. After the Creators Update, users will be able to select either Basic or Full. The amount of diagnostic data being collected at the Basic level has been reduced, and now only “includes data that is vital to the operation of Windows”.
Further Reading for Concerned Windows 10 Users
For anyone who has been using Windows 10 without understanding the privacy implications, we have previously written about Microsoft’s Windows 10 privacy policies. We asked whether you should be worried that Windows 10 is watching; advised you how to configure your Windows 10 privacy settings; and listed a set of tools designed to help you manage your privacy settings.
Are you worried about the Windows 10 usage data Microsoft is collecting? Does the new web-based privacy dashboard ease your concerns? Or the simplified privacy settings? Are you worried about online privacy as a whole? Please let us know in the comments below!