Google to now auto-delete data in 18 months by default

Google has been widely criticized for years about the data collection practices but the company has been trying to change the company’s image by rolling out new tools related to privacy and security.


In the latest attempt, Google has announced that the company will now auto-delete activity and location data from accounts every 18 months by default. On the other hand, YouTube history will get deleted every 36 months.

However, it seems that this applies to new accounts only as existing accounts will need to proactively turn on the feature. Google says that it doesn’t want to force a change on users.

For existing users, Google will now push notifications and email reminders to get them to review their data retention settings.

This is just a change in the policy. Last year, the company had added an option that allowed users to set auto-delete feature for web, app, and location data. With this new policy, the company is changing the default behavior to auto-delete.

While this is a good change from Google, there is still no way for the users to opt for a smaller time period of like a week or a month. Also, note that the auto-delete feature doesn’t apply to services explicitly meant for long-term data storage, like Gmail, Google Drive, and Photos.