Google Says It Won’t Read Emails for Targeting But You Should Still Be Concerned

June 27, 2017

Google recently announced that it will no longer scan emails in Gmail-based accounts in order to sell targeted advertising. But ad personalization is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to maintaining a secure email.

The company’s decision will align Gmail ad curation with other Google products that have already stopped scanning emails, such as G Suite for business users, according to Diane Greene, senior vice president of Google Cloud.

"Ads shown are based on users' settings. Users can change those settings at any time, including disabling ads personalization,” Greene wrote in a blog post regarding the announcement. "Consumer Gmail content will not be used or scanned for any ads personalization after this change."

The specificity of the language leaves a large opening for the company to continue reading a user’s private email address for priority settings or suggesting replies that person might send. Just not for targeting advertisements anymore.

Frederic Lardinois, a writer for Techcrunch, responded to the company’s announcement by saying that Google has already garnered so much information about its users that the email scans are most likely not even contributing to ad performance in a substantial way.

“As much as I’d like to believe that Google is doing this out of the goodness of its heart, chances are the only reason the company would make any changes to its advertising products is because it has data that shows it doesn’t need this additional information about its users,” Lardinois wrote.

If you want to make sure that you preserve the best secure email, look deeper into Google’s actual privacy policies and practices after exploring all options of email protection, such as the Private Email Service provided by Let us keep your personal information out of the hands of big corporations, including those that may seem to have your best interest at heart.

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