Google has hit back at those who think it is turning its back on its 'don't be evil' mantra by explaining that its recent privacy changes are all about making things simple and more transparent.
Google's recent changes are big news for everyone who uses myriad Google products, as it has unified its rules and regulations so if you sign into one Google property, information about you from other Google services may be used by Google to push out relevant ads and the like to you.
In a statement from the company, Google policy manager Betsy Masiello explained that the new regulations were nothing but a good thing for users.
"We're making things simpler and we're trying to be upfront about it. Period.
"You still have choice and control. You don't need to log in to use many of our services, including Search, Maps and YouTube."
The statement continued: "You can use as much or as little of Google as you want. For example, you can have a Google Account and choose to use Gmail, but not use Google+.
"Or you could keep your data separate with different accounts – for example, one for YouTube and another for Gmail."
Google's new policy settings are set to appear as of 1 March. But you can check just what Google thinks of you by going to the site's ad preferences. For some reason, Google has this writer pegged as a 65-year-old woman…
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Marc Chacksfield is the Editor In Chief, Shortlist.com at DC Thomson. He started out life as a movie writer for numerous (now defunct) magazines and soon found himself online - editing a gaggle of gadget sites, including TechRadar, Digital Camera World and Tom's Guide UK. At Shortlist you'll find him mostly writing about movies and tech, so no change there then.