Your Google Account History and How to Delete

Many people use Google and it is a good tactic to learn how to delete the Google account history.  According to a 2018 study by HubSpot, Google is the most-used search engine. It has over 70% of the search market share, meaning that if users have a question, they’re going to Google for the answer.

If you use Google frequently enough, you’re likely to make an account, too. This gives you access to Google Photos, Google Drive, YouTube, and even more. It’s incredibly convenient, and it’s one of the things that makes Google so appealing to Internet users.

It’s also one of the things that makes Google potentially dangerous. Google collects a great deal of information from its users, and one of the biggest things that Google keeps a record of is your history. If you want to take the first step in keeping yourself safe from Google’s information hunting, here’s how.

Option 1: If you want to delete all your Google account history manually

  1. Navigate to your Google account. You can select your account profile image in the top right of the Google home page, then selecting Manage Your Google Account.
  2. Select Data & Personalization from the top left navigation panel.
  3. Scroll until you find Activity and Timeline; under it, select My Activity.
  4. Click the three vertical dots at the top right of the page’s search bar.

NOTE: These three vertical dots, called the term More, as they show you further options for your account. These three dots, which will refer to More, from now on.

  1. Click Delete Activity By. This will take you to a Delete Activity page. On this page, select All Time.
  2. Google will ask you which services you’d like to delete your activity from. To delete all your Google account activity, do not uncheck any of the boxes and select Next.
  3. Click Delete, and your Google account history up until this point will be deleted.

Option 2: If you want to delete your Google account history automatically

  1. Navigate to your Google account. This can be done by clicking your account profile image in the top right of the Google home page, then selecting Manage Your Google Account.
  2. Click Data and Personalization from the top left navigation panel.
  3. Select Activity Controls, then Web & App Activity.
  4. Click Manage Activity. Click More at the top right hand corner by the page’s search bar and select Keep Activity For.
  5. Choose how long you would like to keep your activity. Once you have made your choice, click Next, then Confirm to save your choice to your account.

NOTE: At this time Google only has two options for automatic deletion: delete after three months or delete after eighteen months. There is no option for deleting activity immediately. If this is something you would prefer, deleting manually may be a better option for you.

Also know that while this option is easier for the user in the future, it does not delete all Google account activity. Google explains on their support site that this deletes some of your activity because other information is stored in alternate locations; for example, Location History is saved to Maps Timeline instead of My Activity. Deleting your activity manually is a more comprehensive approach.

Option 3: Possibly stop saving this information all together

  1. Navigate to your Google account. This can be done by clicking your account profile image in the top right of the Google home page, then selecting Manage Your Google Account.
  2. Choose Data and Personalization from the top left navigation panel.
  3. Under Activity Controls, select Manage Your Activity Controls.
  4. Here you have the option to turn off the activity for three main sections: Web & App Activity, YouTube History, and Location History. Uncheck the boxes for the activity you don’t want to save. You can also turn off ad personalization.
  5. If you choose to turn off activity monitoring for any of these sections, you will have to click “Pause” to confirm your choice and save the settings to your account.

This, too, is not a comprehensive way to eliminate your Google account history. Google is very careful about the way they word their instructions, saying that certain methods will delete “some” or “most” of your history and activity. Deleting your account history manually (option 1) is the safest way to go, but options 2 and 3 offer back at least partial privacy to the user.

It’s incredibly difficult to completely block your information from getting into the hands of Google. Even after you delete, Google makes it clear that some of your information may stay with them for “records.” Deleting your history manually every few months or weeks can become a chore, but it’s one way to gain back some control over your own activity and account history.

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