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How Gmail protects your privacy & keeps you in control

Keeping you safe online means protecting your information and respecting your privacy. That’s why, in every product we make, we focus on keeping your information secure, treating it responsibly and keeping you in control. Our teams work every day to make Google products safe no matter what you’re doing – browsing the web, managing your inbox or getting directions.

Protecting your privacy starts with keeping your data secure. Your information is protected by world-class security, monitoring things such as suspicious logins and unauthorised activity. You can control your privacy settings at any time in your Google Account.

A more helpful and personalised experience for you

When you use Gmail, we offer you personalised and assistive experiences, such as Smart Reply, by processing some data. Your information stays secure. You can always control your privacy settings in your Google Account.

Your content is stored securely

When you send an email or text message, send attachments or record video meetings, they are stored securely in our world-class data centres. Data is encrypted in transit and at rest. If you choose to access this data offline, we store this info on your device.

Your name & email address help sync your data and keep you updated

To store your preferences, help you sign in, get files you've uploaded through other devices and inform you of service changes, we use your name and email address. To make it easy to write emails, we use your contacts.

Your information helps you create and manage your Google Account

To create a brand new Google Account, we collect your name and phone number. When you manage your Google Account, you can choose to provide your physical address, upload your contacts or add a profile photo.

Data is used to improve your Gmail experience

To provide you with features such as smart inbox categories, Smart Compose and spam detection, we use Gmail data to provide a more intelligent email experience and keep you safe.

To improve Gmail’s performance and reliability, and to help with troubleshooting in case of issues while you use Gmail, we collect performance data and crash analytics. We also use this info to help prevent abuse of our services and for analysis. We never sell your personal information, and you have choices over how your information is used.

Sync your services with your location

To understand how your experience of the product may relate to geography, such as when you send feedback to Google, and to keep your account secure, such as if we notice you have signed in from a new location, we use some location info. For example, we’ll proactively notify you if we detect something that we think you should know about, such as a suspicious login or a malicious website, file or app, and we’ll provide guidance to help you strengthen your security.

We do not scan or read your Gmail messages to show you ads

If you have a work or school account, you will never be shown ads in Gmail.

When you use your personal Google account and open the promotions or social tabs in Gmail, you'll see ads that were selected to be the most useful and relevant for you. The process of selecting and showing personalised ads in Gmail is fully automated. These ads are shown to you based on your online activity while you're signed in to Google, however we do not process email content to serve ads.

To remember which ads you've dismissed, avoid showing you the same ads, and show you ads you may like better, we save your past ad interactions, such as which ads you've clicked or dismissed.

You can adjust your ad settings at any time. Learn more about Gmail ads.

Learn how Google detects and reports online child sexual abuse

Gmail detects online child sexual abuse under the Regulation (EU) 2021/1232, which provides for a derogation from the confidentiality of communications under Articles 5(1) and 6(1) of the Directive 2002/58/EC for the purpose of combating online child sexual abuse.

Google does not allow the use of our services to create, upload or distribute content that exploits or abuses children. To keep our service safe we use technology (i.e. hash matching) to detect such content. If we find such content, we will take appropriate action, which may include removing the content and disabling accounts. Users whose accounts are disabled are provided with information on available redress avenues if the user disagrees with our decision. Users within the European Union can also lodge a complaint to their country’s relevant data protection authority and they have the right to seek a judicial remedy as laid out in the Regulation 2021/1232.

Relevant information, which may include personal information and the violative content, is reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), which, in turn, forwards reports to law enforcement authorities around the world, as appropriate.

Stay in control of your content with easy-to-use settings

Google respects your privacy and enables you to control it. We access your private content only when we have your permission or are required to by law.

Smart features and personalisation

Gmail gives you the ability to decide whether or not you want your Gmail data to be used to personalise your Gmail experience and provide smart features, such as Smart Compose and Smart Reply. Learn more about this setting

You can also decide whether or not you want your Gmail data to be used to personalise your experience and provide smart features in other Google products, such as displaying restaurant reservations in Maps or Assistant reminding you that a bill is due. Learn more about this setting

It’s easy to view & delete your data

How you use our products and services is a personal choice that’s up to you. To help you make informed decisions about what data to save, share or delete, we make it easy to understand what data is being collected and why.

For example, with Dashboard, you can see an overview of the Google products you use and the things you store, such as your emails and photos. And with My Activity, it’s easy to see or delete data collected from your activity across Google services, including things you’ve searched for, viewed and watched. Learn how to view and control activity in your Google Account.

If you have a work or school account, your organisation can review logs of actions taken by Google when accessing content. Learn how to view logs with Access Transparency. Learn how Google protects your organisation's security and privacy.

Control your search history

To save you time when you search in Gmail by showing your recent searches you’ve made, we store those search queries. To improve voice search quality, we also collect audio when you perform a voice search. To control your voice activity, use Activity Controls. To review or manage your Gmail search history, use My Activity.

You can take your data with you

Everyone should have access to the content that they’ve shared with us, at any time and for any reason. That’s why we created Download Your Data, so you can download your photos, emails, contacts and bookmarks. It’s your choice to make a copy of your data, back it up or even move it to another service.

You are always in control of the data saved to your Google Account and can choose to delete account activity. Learn how to download your data.

If you have a work or school account, your organisation can choose to download your data and to limit you from downloading it. Learn how an organisation can export its data.

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