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How to Permanently Remove Google Account Web History

Google web history - disable and permanently remove history from your Google account

Do you ever feel like your Google search results might seem a little tailored?  Google Web History could be to blame for that, according to Google “Web History helps deliver more personalized search results based on the things you’ve searched for on Google and the sites you’ve visited.”  But, what if you don’t want Google tracking your web history? 

 

I remember back in 2007 when the service was first introduced, it was automatically enabled.  While this may not be true for newer accounts, if you are an old-school Gmail’r like me, then Google might be keeping tabs on your account’s web history without you even knowing it.  Though, even back then Google provided a nice and easy way to opt-out of the “feature.” 

Ready to permanently clear your history and disable further tracking?  Let’s do it.

Step 1

In your favorite web browser, sign-in to your Google account and go to your Google Account Management page; also known as the account settings page.

You can also get here by clicking on your user icon and selecting Account.

edit google account my products

 

Step 2

Click the link titled Go to web history.  It should be located on the Account tab near the bottom of the page.

remove web history permanently from Google account

 

Step 3

Google has simplified the removal process. Now on the web history page just Click Remove Web History.

remove web history confirmation from google account

 

Step 4

Click the OK button. All you are doing  is clearing your accounts web history, and pausing the web history service so that it is no longer running on your account.  You can easily turn it on again afterwards if you really want to.

confirm removing all history

 

Done!

Your past Google Web History should now be completely cleared out, and the Web History “feature” should now be stopped.  Personally, I don’t think my workplace likes the idea of Google tracking company employees’ web usage, and I don’t like the idea of them tracking me either.  Of course, even if you turn off Web History, “Google also maintains a separate log system for auditing purposes and to help us improve the quality of our services for users.”  So, your search history might still be available to Google, but it will be more difficult for a 3rd party to access it.

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5 Responses to How to Permanently Remove Google Account Web History

  1. Žan July 13, 2011 at 1:17 pm #

    Thanks, this was just what I was looking for!
    This Google web history thing is really redundant.

  2. Shellie November 1, 2011 at 1:12 am #

    I work at a counseling center for at-risk abuse survivors who use donated iPads to journal their interactions and experiences with their partners. Many of these partners continue to be a current source of abusive behaviors. These women face a very real danger should their partner see what has been typed into the search box. The frightening reality is that the iPad’s Google app retains all that has ever been typed into that box, and regurgitates it as part of it’s alphabetical instant search feature within the first one to two letters typed into its’ search box thereafter! I was hoping that the glaring privacy issue of the iPad’s inability and the Google apps’ unwillingness to permanently clear past search history from it’s instant search results would be addressed. Despite utilizing “clear history” when results drop down in the menu, and despite clearing cookies and cache, etc., from Google and Safari in the iPad settings icon, plus despite clearing bookmarks in the Safari app, finally despite meticulously following the instructions from the iPad help, this serious security breach remains. In fact, iPad help instructs to use the settings touch button (the sprocket icon located on a pull down screen located above the search box) to open the Google app menu. Within it is supposedly a button saying “save recent searches”. When clicked it supposedly offers a yes and no choice. If no is chosen, then supposedly all searches are cleared and all future searches not saved. Disturbingly, this button is absent from the menu! it does not exist. The same goes for the non-existent “web history” button that supposdly should appear in tjis same menu, Which presupposes that when iPad help was developed, it was assumed that such buttons would be included in the menu feature when, it turns out, they were not.

  3. Deepak shukla November 8, 2011 at 2:12 am #

    My nema deepak shukla i am student of theory in films stip and discovey in Indian in tested in kahani natak and history

  4. g.s. brown December 6, 2011 at 10:34 pm #

    you should review and re-publish the instructions for disabling google history settings as the process is presently aa bit different than the method you describe…..things change…..keep up the good and fully appreciated work.

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