It’s been a while since I stopped using Google and its services. I’ve been using DuckDuckGo as my default search engine and plenty of other platforms to replace services I used to get from Google. I actually use Google sometimes but when I do, I use Tor Browser and a noscript add-on with https everywhere installed. But there’s some reasons I don’t use Google anymore.
To summarize the reasons I should say Google requires unfair Terms of Service, tracks you, stores data you may not be informed about, helps censorship, installs software/module without your permission, uses its influence to weaken those that campaign against them, and sells/provides your data to third-parties such as NSA and others.
Reason One: Google Knows All
Google stores all data. Everything you searched, typed, looked at, put your mouse at, screen size, linked you opened, and everything. Google knows everything about you. Knows where you are, whats your name, what computer you use, what your hobbies are, what you are interested in, and plenty of other stuff.
Google uses these information to show you custom ads and custom data. Search results are personalized and ads are based on your data. Google doesn’t even protects your data. Google reportedly sells you data and does not stand against governmental pressures. Google stores everything without prior notices and does not asks if you are OK with it.
Google also puts Terms of Service on physical products. Google closes accounts of those who resell their Pixel devices without letting them download data they stored on it. They lose their access to emails and other data.
Two: Google Helps Censorship
Google had cooperated with China’s censorship policies for years. The thing that motivated the change in Google’s policy had nothing to do with Chinese censorship. Google helps Chinese government to censor information and search results. Google also provides a lot of services to governments. Almost 60% of government “gone Google” and thousands of gigabytes of governmental data are stored on Google. Google now controls the access of government to its own data.
Google versus China is just the under card. The really interesting battle will happen if the Justice Department decides to follow through on its plans to make Google this decade’s Microsoft. That’s when we get the main event: Google vs. US Government. It should be a pretty good fight as long as the Government can get used to being the underdog for once.
Three: Google Installs Software/Module Without Notice
Google has made it so that Chrome now automatically installs the DRM module. This makes it dangerous for security researchers in the US to investigate possible insecurity in Chrome. More Information.
Four: Google Weakens Those Who Stand Against This
Google actively weakens those who campaign against this. There’s a report on Guardian that explains how Barry Lynn lost his job because he stood up against Google’s increasing power. Google also considers its opposition websites/campaigns/services to be in violation of its Terms of Services.
Five: Google Controls Your Account
Google reads emails, analyzes files, tracks your usage of system, collects your information and violates your privacy. Google can close your account without prior notice or it can restrict your access. On Google, you’re not owner of you account, you’re only a user of your own data.
Google has found a way to track most credit card purchases in the US, even those not done through a phone, and correlate that with people’s online actions. Google Play sends app developers the personal details of users that install the app. Merely asking users’ “consent” for this is not enough to legitimize it.
We know that most users have given up on reading just what they are “consenting” to, and the reason is that they are accustomed to being told, “If you want to use this service, you must consent to blah blah blah.” To truly protect people’s privacy, we must stop Google from getting this personal information in the first place!