New Windows 10 Privacy Settings Are Coming

The rollout of Windows 10 was somewhat controversial in the tech community. 
On one hand, the new operating system that powers many Windows computers was eagerly anticipated, especially for the enhanced features it would bring with it. Some critics took a very harsh stance, though, against the widespread feeling of being “forced” into upgrading, something that didn’t sit well with a lot of users.

One of the chief concerns, however, has been the gray area of personal user privacy. Microsoft has admitted quite openly that Windows 10 gathers and stores a lot of information from the user, and then uses that information in both transparent and not-so-transparent ways. But that’s about to change with the spring 2017 release of the Creator Update.

Updating any kind of software is typically a good idea as it helps fix issues from the developer. This particular update seems to have been created following actual user input, especially higher-ups like business IT professionals and tech administrators. Its main focus is to afford the administrators more control over their companies’ privacy settings, as well as create a dashboard that gives an at-a-glance look at what information has been reported back to Microsoft. This is particularly necessary for industries that have to protect proprietary business information or adhere to confidentiality regulations.

But even if you’re not using a computer in the workplace, it’s important for everyone to understand that most software, websites, apps, and social media platforms come with some level of built-in data collection on the users. First of all, it was spelled out in those terms and conditions when you installed or signed up for it. And not all data collection is bad; if a web browser or social media site looks at your search history and supports itself by letting advertisers promote products you’re actually shopping for, that’s not usually a bad thing. You get ads for discounts on items you actually might want, and the tech company pays its employees while maintaining a free service.

But the potential for more sensitive data gathering still doesn’t sit well with some privacy experts, especially since not all the data that gets gathered is harmless. That’s why Microsoft’s update will offer more choice and more control, as well as more transparency when it comes to who can see your activity and what they can do with it.

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