Google enhances online safety with new features

Google has introduced new features on Google search to help individuals stay in control of their personal information, privacy and online safety.

The communication and public relations manager, West Africa, Google, Taiwo Kola-Ogunlade, said on Friday that Google is conscious of its users’ online safety, making it the safest way to search.

Mr Kola-Ogunlade said that in 2022, Google launched the ‘Results about you’ tool, to make it easy for individuals to request the removal of search results that contain personal phone number, home address or email, right from the Google app or however search is accessed.

He said that Google had significantly updated and improved the tool, helping users keep track of personal contact information in search and alerting them when found so that it could be removed.

According to him, in the coming days, Google will be rolling out a new dashboard that will let users know if web results with their contact information are showing up on search.

The communication officer said that one could quickly request the removal of those results from Google — right in the tool.

“Google will also notify one when new results from the web containing contact info pop up in search, to give you added peace of mind.

“You can access this tool in the Google app by clicking on your Google account photo and selecting “Results about you”, or by visiting google/resultsaboutyou.

“This tool is available in the U.S. in English to start, and we’re working to bring it to new languages and locations soon,’’ he said.

According to him, more control of family is another feature of family from inadvertently encountering explicit imagery on Search.

Mr Kola-Ogunlade said that with this update, explicit imagery, such as adult or graphic violent content, would now be blurred by default when it appears in search results.

He said that the new ‘SafeSearch’ blurring setting was rolling out for all users globally, which could be adjusted in settings and turned off at any time unless a guardian or school network administrator has locked the setting.

Mr Kola-Ogunlade said that Google was also making it easier to find parental controls directly in Search.

“Just type in a relevant query like “google parental controls” or “google family link,” and you will see a box with information on how to manage your parental controls.’’

He, however, highlighted other improved features such as ‘enable people remove’, which could be used to remove from search any of their personal, explicit images that they no longer wish to be visible in search, among others.


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