Google privacy settings on iPhone: Relaxed level

Learn how to change your privacy settings on Google using iPhone. These steps adjust your privacy and security settings to Relaxed level protection.
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How to protect your account from getting hacked

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Set a strong password

What for: So that attackers cannot crack it.

A Google account lets you synchronize music, photos, contacts, and other data across devices. However, if it is hacked, criminals can gain access to all of that data. Another danger is that if someone has access to your Google account, they can remotely lock out any connected devices and erase all data from them.

Make sure that your account is protected by a strong password that complies with the following requirements:

  • Is at least 8 characters long,
  • Contains lowercase and uppercase letters, numbers, and special characters ($, @, etc.),
  • Is not an actual word or easy-to-guess phrase,
  • Is not the same as your passwords for any other accounts,
  • Does not consist of information that strangers could easily find out (your name, date of birth, pet's name, and so forth — or those of your friends or relatives).

To change the password:

  1. Tap your profile picture in the upper right corner of the app’s main screen;
  2. Select Manage your Google account;
  3. Go to the Sign-in & security section;
  4. Select Password;
  5. Enter your current password;
  6. Enter a new strong password (twice) and tap Change password.

Configure two-step verification

What for: Greater protection against hacking.

You can increase the security of your Google account by enabling two-step verification. Every time you try to log in from a new device, the system will ask for a one-time code. A notification will be sent to all gadgets that are already logged in to that account. Thus, even if someone tries to hack your account, you will still be able to prevent them from logging in.

A login can be verified by one of the following methods:

  • Using a trusted device. When you try to log in to an account from an unknown device, a message will appear on the phone with your Google account asking you to verify the login. You’ll find a list of devices that have attempted to log in but are awaiting verification on the Settings page;
  • Using a one-time code you receive by text or a phone call;
  • Using your phone's built-in security key. Keep in mind that built-in security keys are supported only by devices with Android 7.0 or later. For them to work, the phone must be located next to your PC, and Bluetooth must be enabled on both devices.

To enable two-step verification using a trusted device:

  1. Tap your profile picture in the upper right corner of the app’s main screen;
  2. Select Manage your Google account;
  3. Go to the Sign-in & security section;
  4. Tap 2-Step Verification;
  5. Tap Try it now to receive a notification on listed devices;
  6. When a request to log in to the account appears on the screen of the trusted device, tap Yes;
  7. Google will suggest that you select a backup authentication method in case your trusted device is unavailable. To choose to receive the code by text or a phone call:
  8. Enter the phone number that you want to use to receive the codes;
  9. Choose how you want to receive the code (SMS or Phone Call) and tap Submit;
  10. Enter the code you receive by text or voice message and tap Next.
  11. To select backup codes as an additional verification method:
  12. Tap Use a different method;
  13. When the backup codes appear on the screen, take a screenshot, save them to a PDF file, or print them out;
  14. Tap Next.
  15. Tap Enable.

If you do not want to use a trusted device, choose another method of receiving the code — by text or a phone call:

  1. In the Manage Your Google Account menu go to Sign in & security;
  2. Tap 2-Step Verification;
  3. Tap Get started;
  4. Enter your Google account password and tap Next;
  5. Tap Show more options;
  6. Choose Text message or voice call;
  7. Enter the phone number that you want to use to receive SMS messages or phone calls with codes;
  8. Choose how you want to receive the code (SMS or Phone Call) and tap Next;
  9. Enter the code that you received by text or voice message and tap Next;
  10. Tap Enable.

To enable two-step verification using a security key, in the same section:

  1. Tap 2-Step Verification;
  2. Tap Get started;
  3. Enter your Google account password and tap Next;
  4. Tap Show more options;
  5. Go to the Security key section with the name of your device and follow the instructions;
  6. Tap Done.

After you have enabled two-step verification, you can add several more login methods:

  • Using backup codes that work even if your phone is not available,
  • With the Google Authenticator app.


Use a trusted device, an incoming phone call, a special app, a security key, or backup codes for secure additional verification; an attacker can use malware or a communication protocol vulnerability to intercept a text message with a one-time code.


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How to prevent your personal data from being exposed

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Limit the visibility of your profile

What for: So that strangers can’t learn too much about you.

By default certain data from your account is visible to other users. This includes, for example, your date of birth, gender, and phone number. To prevent strangers from viewing this information, you can deny access to it:

  1. Tap your profile picture in the upper right corner of the app main screen;
  2. Select Manage your Google account;
  3. Go to the Personal info & privacy section;
  4. Scroll down the page and find the About me section;
  5. Select the fields containing information that you want to deny access to, and specify that only you can see it.

You may not limit access to certain data, such as photos and names.


What would have happened if you had chosen another privacy level?

Privacy level
?

Relaxed

Basic privacy settings, maximum convenience.


Medium

A golden mean respecting privacy matters but preserving convenience.


Tight

A choice of security over convenience; instructions contain a lot of details.

Relaxed
Medium
Tight
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