Control privacy on Windows 10 PCs with the following 22 tips

Control privacy on Windows 10 PCs with the following 22 tips

Each Microsoft account has an advertising ID that allows Microsoft to collect information about you and deliver ads based on your interests. If you sign in to Windows 10 with your Microsoft account, your personal ads will “follow” you, access your computer – you’ll see these ads on the app and possibly on your operating system (such as on the Start Menu).

What to do to control privacy on Windows 10?

  • 1. Prevent Cortana from collecting information about you
  • 2. Turn off location tracking
  • 3. Stop syncing
  • 4. Lock screen lock Lock Screen
  • 5. Turn off Advertising ID
  • 6. Don’t use Express Settings when installing Windows 10
  • 7. Control camera access
  • 8. Control access to the microphone
  • 9. Turn off Speech, Inking & Typing settings
  • 10. Control application’s access to contacts
  • 11. Control the application’s access to the calendar
  • 12. Control app’s access to call history
  • 13. Control application access to email
  • 14. Control the application’s access to tasks
  • 15. Control the application’s access to text messages
  • 16. Control the application’s access to the “radio” on the computer
  • 17. Control the application’s access to other devices on the computer
  • 18. Control the Diagnostics & Feedback section
  • 19. Control the Background Apps section
  • 20. Control the App Diagnostics section
  • 21. Automatic File Downloads
  • 22. Manage privacy settings in the Edge browser

1. Prevent Cortana from collecting information about you

Cortana virtual assistant is one of the new features built into Windows 10, Cortana can be said to be a useful digital assistant. In order to do her job well, however, Cortana will need to know the personal information about you.

Therefore, in order to secure your personal information, you should prevent Cortana from collecting the information. You can choose from a few options like disabling Cortana completely or just disabling certain crawling features.

To do this, first open Menu Settings => Speech, inking, & typing . Under Getting to know you , click Stop gettings to know me .

This will disable the command authority and will wipe out any information Cortana collects on your device. You can also delete the information Cortana has gathered at Change what Cortana knows about me in the cloud on the Cortana Settings Menu.

2. Turn off location tracking

If you are using mobile devices like a tablet or laptop, wherever you go, Windows 10 knows but you never know this.

When location tracking is activated, the operating system collects the user’s location to provide relevant information such as local weather, the location of nearby restaurants, and more.

However, if you don’t want Windows 10 to track your location, you can set the operating system to stop it.

To turn off location tracking, open Menu Settings => Location . You can turn off location tracking for all users (at Location for this device is on => Change) or you can turn off Location services for your account (at Location service).

Also on this Menu you can delete your location tracking history and allow specific apps to track (or not) exactly where you are.

To quickly switch Location services to ON or OFF, you can open the Action center and change the Location settings quickly.

3. Stop syncing

Windows 10 has the ability to sync with many mobile platforms and synchronize many different data. If you sign in with a Microsoft account, your settings, including passwords, can sync with other devices when you’re signed in to the same account. Notifications will even be synced between devices.

If you don’t want to sync your settings and passwords on other devices when you sign in with the same Microsoft account you can turn off the sync feature.

To turn off sync , open Menu Settings => Accounts => Sync your settings . You can turn off all sync settings at the same time or switch individual sync settings to OFF individually.

To turn off sync notifications , open Cortana => Settings => Send notifications between devices . Here you can turn off all sync notifications or click Edit sync settings to manage login on different devices.

4. Lock screen lock Lock Screen

Every time you open your device, the first thing that users see is the Lock Screen lock screen , and this lock screen can have a lot of information that you don’t want strangers to access.

Here are 3 things you need to keep in mind to lock the log-in screen:

First make sure the notifications do not appear on the Lock Screen lock screen. To do this, open the Settings menu => Notifications & actions and turn off the option Show notifications on the lock screen . When you turn this feature off, you won’t be able to see any notifications until you unlock your device.

Turn off Cortana visible on Lock Screen by opening Cortana => Settings => Use Cortana even when my device is locked . When this feature is turned off, you cannot use Cortana while the device is locked.

You can also limit Cortana’s scope on Lock Screen instead of turning off Cortana completely by unchecking Let Cortana access my calendar, email, messages and Power BI when my device is locked . This way you can still ask Cortana to answer questions without revealing any of your personal information while the device is locked.

Hide email address on Lock Screen by opening Menu Settings => Accounts => Sign-in options => Privacy . Switch the option state of Show account details (eg email address) on sign-in screen to OFF .

5. Turn off Advertising ID

Each Microsoft account has an advertising ID that allows Microsoft to collect information about you and deliver ads based on your interests. If you sign in to Windows 10 with your Microsoft account, your personal ads will “follow” you, access your computer – you’ll see these ads on the app and possibly on your operating system (such as on the Start Menu).

To disable these ads on a Windows 10 computer, open Menu Settings => Privacy => General => Let apps use my advertising ID for experiences across apps (turning this off will reset your ID) and turn off this option .

Turning this feature off will prevent personal ads from appearing on Windows 10 computer popup windows.

6. Don’t use Express Settings when installing Windows 10

If you haven’t installed Windows 10 or are planning to buy a PC with Windows 10 installed, don’t use the Express Settings option when you do the initial setup.

Instead, choose Custom Settings so you can be responsible for your privacy in the first place.

Do not use Express Settings when installing Windows 10

Choosing Custom Settings during Windows 10 setup will allow you to adjust settings that control how Microsoft accesses your personal information.

Quick tip : If you’re not really crazy about the idea of keeping lots of your personal information and other data “in the cloud”, consider creating a local login account instead of using an account connected Microsoft account.

Remember this will prevent you from accessing any files that you have stored in Microsoft’s OneDrive cloud storage.

As of the Fall Creators Windows Update, Windows 10 users now have direct access to the full privacy statement during installation. While many users won’t actually read this entire statement, the article mentions this detail to indicate that Microsoft has included Learn More links in that text.

Learn More links allow users to jump to the sections they are interested in

Learn More links allow users to jump to the relevant sections of the statement they may be interested in. These sections include information like how Windows 10 handles speech recognition, location, diagnostics, and more.

7. Control camera access

Control camera access

Have you ever felt someone watching you? Some people choose to stick the tape through the built-in camera on both laptops and tablets.

Camera access in Windows 10 can be controlled easily. Using the Camera menu in the Privacy section of the Settings app, you can turn off access to your built-in camera or tablet completely. You can also set camera access on an app-by-app basis.

The general system access is controlled by the familiar switch switch located directly under the label Let apps use my camera hardware , as seen above.

When turning off camera access for an app, be aware that this only prevents the app from accessing the camera hardware directly. The app can still request to open the built-in camera. This app can only take pictures or record videos when you give your explicit permission.

8. Control access to the microphone

While allowing Windows to access a computer’s microphone doesn’t seem like the same privacy risk as allowing access to a device’s camera, it can still be a sensitive thing.

Take control of access to the microphone!

Just like with the Camera settings, you should leave the ‘ Let apps use my microphone ‘ toggle on and then decide which individual apps to have access to the microphone. Allowing Skype to access the microphone should work, but Photos and Windows Store don’t really need the microphone to work properly.

For this setting, you need to allow or block on an application-level basis. After a while, you should clearly see which apps are actually asking for access to the microphone on your device.

9. Turn off Speech, Inking & Typing settings

These parts of the Privacy dashboard settings control how you can use your voice to talk to Cortana or certain apps that you download from the Windows Store. They also use voice input to improve Microsoft’s cloud-based voice services.

Speech, Inking & Typing settings use voice input to improve Microsoft cloud-based services

In addition, these sections control whether Windows uses your typing history (handwriting patterns on Surface devices and other tablets) to create local user dictionaries, which are supposed to gives you better text input suggestions.

Windows can use your typing history, handwriting patterns on Surface devices, and other tablets to create local user dictionaries.

When these features are turned off, you can no longer talk to Cortana, and user-entered and written dictionaries will also have data erased. Some non-cloud voice services will still work. Recommendations input and handwriting recognition by the local system dictionary will also remain active.

Shifting this setting to the “Off” position will help you with your privacy efforts, but will also result in the loss of some features that you are familiar with.

It seems like this is what happens in today’s online world: You will have to make a choice between convenience and privacy.

10. Control application’s access to contacts

Control application access to contacts

Guess what the Contacts switch does? This switch determines whether Windows applications have access to your Address Book.

If you set this to “ Off ”, all apps that access contacts will be blocked. Switching to “ On ” allows you to specify which apps receive access to the contacts.

Just like the Account Info toggle button, if you turn it off completely or on a per-app basis, it may prevent some apps from working as intended. If you encounter this problem, you should contact the developer.

11. Control the application’s access to the calendar

Control app’s access to calendar

This switch controls the application’s access to your calendar. When it is switched to Off , it turns off all the app’s access to your calendar information.

Once enabled, you will decide which lucky Windows apps to watch over your upcoming days.

What you do in these settings depends on how you use your computer, and some different applications may need access to your calendar information.

12. Control app’s access to call history

Control app’s access to call history

The Windows Privacy setting also controls the app’s access to the call history. If you disable this feature, it will not allow all apps to access any of your call history information. Enable this feature and you can set access to said information on a per-app basis.

If you are not making any calls via Windows computer or Windows Phone, you can turn off this option. However, some people may find themselves needing granular control over this.

13. Control application access to email

Control app’s access to email

For many users, access to email, both personal and work, is a sensitive subject. They hardly trust any email provider that won’t monitor their inbox, let alone other apps.

Email can include all of your communications with business associates, as well as friends and family. Therefore, you can turn off this feature completely. But if you have a dedicated application that really needs access to the email, then you may want to do the permissions setup on an app-by-app basis.

14. Control the application’s access to tasks

The task could be another sensitive subject. The daily to-do list is where you build your daily work life and should avoid anyone having access to this information.

Control app access to tasks

For similar groups of settings, turning the button to “Off” will prevent all apps from accessing information about your tasks. Go through the list of apps and decide which ones actually need access to the list.

It’s worth noting that the built-in Mail and Calendar apps will always have access to your tasks, no matter what setting you decide to choose.

15. Control the application’s access to text messages

Maybe you don’t text much via Windows, however, sometimes you may use Skype on your Windows PC for example. If so this setting will become important.

Control app’s access to text messages

On this screen, you can do all the steps, turn off messaging access for all apps or enable general access, and decide which apps really need access to messages. your text.

16. Control the application’s access to the “radio” on the computer

The radio in question here is not the radio that you use to listen to live broadcasts, but the Bluetooth and WiFi transmitter that Windows computers use to connect to local networks, accessories and other devices. . Giving access to computer radios has some pretty important privacy effects. By allowing access, you can make yourself vulnerable to WiFi and Bluetooth signals.

Control the application’s access to the “radio” on the computer

Radio access is also used to share information, such as files, messages, and other important information, so you may not be able to disable application access. However, unless you know about a particular application you use that requires this access, you should disable it.

17. Control the application’s access to other devices on the computer

This section of the Privacy dashboard allows you to choose and set up how applications share, as well as synchronize information with, devices that are not specifically paired with your computer. As always, you can turn it off completely or leave it as it is and choose which apps are allowed to share information with those “other devices”.

Control application’s access to other devices on computer

You will want to be careful with the apps you allow to sync with other trusted devices. If in doubt, contact the application developer. Any reputable developer should be willing to explain what the app can share.

18. Control the Diagnostics & Feedback section

This is where you control the amount of usage and diagnostics data Windows sends back to Microsoft.

The feature cannot be turned off completely by the user, so the best way you can do here is to click the “Basic” button to send the minimum amount of data that can be sent back to the parent company.

Turn off the toggle switch just below the “Let Microsoft provide more tailored experiences…” paragraph. There is no reason to submit that information.

Diagnostics & Feedback

The last option in this section is how often you let Windows ask you to respond. While some people are generous with their time, others don’t want to be disturbed.

You can set this setting to “Never” or let it ask you to respond anywhere from once a week to “Automatically” .

19. Control the Background Apps section

This section allows you to decide which applications, if any, will be allowed to run in the background, send and receive information silently, issue notifications and update themselves, even when they are not used normally. piercing.

Background Apps

You can turn off background apps completely or choose which apps will be allowed to run in the background, send information, consume precious processor cycles and battery life when you’re out and about.

Everyone has a unique need, so make a wise choice.

20. Control the App Diagnostics section

In this final section of the Privacy dashboard, the user is asked to decide whether to allow access to diagnostic data about other applications. Microsoft says some applications use diagnostic data from others to run as intended.

App Diagnostics

Information that can be accessed includes the user account that started the application as well as the application’s memory, CPU, disk, and network usage.

First, try disabling this option. If you find that an app that previously had access to this info isn’t working as it should, re-enable the option for that app. If not, avoid this when possible.

21. Automatic File Downloads

“Automatic File Downloads” is a new addition to the Privacy settings in Windows 10.

Automatic File Downloads

This section lets you unblock apps that automatically download online files from OneDrive and other online cloud storage services. If you use online storage to prevent your hard drive from filling up, you may want to allow apps that have access to cloud-only files on a case-by-case basis.

22. Manage privacy settings in the Edge browser

Microsoft Edge is the default browser in Windows 10. It replaces the venerable but outdated Internet Explorer.

Microsoft says Edge is compact and fast, but doesn’t say how secure it is. So this section wants to remind users to consider which settings to pay more attention to to protect your privacy in the Edge browser. Reference: How do I customize my privacy settings on Edge Windows 10? For more details.

Refer to some more articles below:

  • How to activate Dark Mode in Windows 10?

  • How to use Command Prompt to manage wireless networks on Windows 10?

  • The trick to enable / disable Windows Updates on Windows 10 is fast and easy

Good luck!