Microsoft Privacy Ad Highlighting Controversial Changes in Google Privacy Policy - Google Busts Myths About Privacy Apprach

Following Google's last week announcing a consolidate privacy policy, Frank X. Shaw, CVP, Corporate Communications, Microsoft writes these changes are meant to increase the control Google has over users' accounts, and won't increase transparency on the matter. In fact, these changes would make it harder for the user to stay in control of its information."The […]

Google Privacy Policy Change NoticeFollowing Google's last week announcing a consolidate privacy policy, Frank X. Shaw, CVP, Corporate Communications, Microsoft writes these changes are meant to increase the control Google has over users' accounts, and won't increase transparency on the matter. In fact, these changes would make it harder for the user to stay in control of its information.

"The changes Google announced make it harder, not easier, for people to stay in control of their own information," stated Shaw in a February 1 blog post on Microsoft blog.

Writing further Shaw underlines that the Redmond software company is keeping its users safe and secure online, and that they are those who control their data. "We take a different approach - we work to keep you safe and secure online, to give you control over your data, and to offer you the choice of saving your information on your hard drive, in the cloud, or on both," notes Shaw.

Here are some of the alternatives Microsoft proposes:

  • Hotmail: Join the hundreds of millions of people who enjoy not worrying about the content of their private e-mails being used to serve ads.
  • Bing: The search engine that gives you great experiences using the whole Web.
  • Office 365: The award-winning online collaboration solution for businesses who don't want their documents and mail used to benefit advertisers.
  • Internet Explorer: The world's most popular browser, now with Tracking Protection, offering controls over your privacy as you browse.

Adding, further he said if you haven't tried these Microsoft products and services, give 'em a shot. If you've tried them before and moved on, come on back. We've left the light on for you.

Meanwhile, Google is busy repsonding to to criticism and question raised by the U.S. Congress and the users worlwide. In the latest post on privacy policy changes entitled "Busting myths about our approach to privacy", the search gaint responded to points that Microsoft highlighted in its new privacy ad campaign: (see the quote below the print ad)

(click to enlarge)Microsoft Privacy Print Ad

Per Google Privacy blog post:

  • Myth: In 2011, Google made $36 billion selling information about users like you. [Fairsearch - PDF]
  • Fact: Google does not sell, trade or rent personally identifiable user information. Advertisers can run ads on Google that are matched to search keywords, or use our services to show ads based on anonymous data, such as your location or the websites you've visited.
  • Myth: Google's Privacy Policy changes make it harder for users to control their personal information. [Microsoft]
  • Fact: Our privacy controls have not changed. Period. Our users can: edit and delete their search history; edit and delete their YouTube viewing history; use many of our services signed in or out; use Google Dashboard and our Ads Preferences Manager to see what data we collect and manage the way it is used; and take advantage of our data liberation efforts if they want to remove information from our services.
  • Myth: Google is changing our Privacy Policy to make the data we collect more valuable to advertisers. [Microsoft]
  • Fact: The vast majority of the product personalization Google does is unrelated to ads--it's about making our services better for users. Today a signed-in user can instantly add an appointment to their Calendar when a message in Gmail looks like it's about a meeting, or read Google Docs within their email.
  • Myth: Google reads your email. [Microsoft]
  • Fact: No one reads your email but you. Like most major email providers, our computers scan messages to get rid of spam and malware, as well as show ads that are relevant to you.
  • Myth: Google Apps aren't safe, and aren't government-certified. [Microsoft]
  • Fact: Google's Apps are certified for government use because they are secure.
  • Myth: Google's Privacy Policy changes jeopardize government information in Google Apps. [SafeGov.org]
  • Fact: Our new Privacy Policy does not change our contractual agreements, which have always superseded Google's Privacy Policy for enterprise customers.
  • Myth: Microsoft's approach to privacy is better than Google's. [Microsoft]
  • Fact: We don't make judgments about other people's policies or controls. But our industry-leading Privacy Dashboard, Ads Preferences Manager and data liberation efforts enable you to understand and control the information we collect and how we use it--and we've simplified our privacy policy to make it easier to understand. Microsoft has no data liberation effort or Dashboard-like hub for users. Their privacy policy states that "information collected through one Microsoft service may be combined with information obtained through other Microsoft services."