How to ask Google to auto-wipe your activity data on iOS


It takes care of itself.
Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

You can now ask the Google app on iOS to automatically wipe your location and activity history.

The new feature, which was showcased during Google I/O in late May, takes the hassle out of covering your tracks. You only have to set it up once and it will take care of itself going forward. Here’s how to get started.

Google has a reputation for harvesting every bit of data it can get from its users. But it has — perhaps thanks to Apple’s strict stance on the matter — started to take privacy a little more seriously.

Its latest effort to help users keep their personal data personal is the option to automatically clear location and activity data in the Google app.

How to set it up

To take advantage of this feature, follow the simply steps below:

  1. Open the Google app for iOS
  2. Tap the options button in the bottom-right corner, then tap Search activity
  3. Tap Choose to delete automatically
  4. Select how frequently you want your data to be wiped, then tap Next
  5. Finally, tap the Confirm button

You only have to do this once. Once your preferences are saved, your data will be auto-deleted going forward. You will only need to change these settings if you want to adjust the auto-delete frequency or disable it.

Google steps up privacy controls

This feature only applies to location and web and app activity for now, but Google will be making it available to other services later.

“You should always be able to manage your data in a way that works best for you — and we’re committed to giving you the best controls to make that happen,” Google says.

If you don’t already have access to auto-delete in the Google app, try again later. It will take a few weeks to reach all users.


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