It’s no secret that Google tracks your activity in its products, but you have some control over your information. This data can be automatically wiped clean, and it can be put behind a password to protect it from prying eyes.
Your Google activity can be accessed at activity.google.com. This is where everything you do with Google products is recorded—unless you turn off tracking. Google Searches, Google Assistant commands, Google Maps locations, YouTube history—it’s all here.
That’s obviously a lot of very personal information, and it’s easily accessible to anyone who visits the page on a device where you’re signed in to your Google account. Thankfully, it can be password protected.
To get started, go to the activity.google.com page in a web browser such as Google Chrome. Make sure that you’re signed in to your Google account.
Next, click “Manage My Activity Verification.”
A pop-up message will appear with two options. Select “Require Extra Verification” and click “Save.”
You’ll be asked to sign in to your Google account again to verify that it’s you.
That’s all there is to it. You’ll now notice that the information on the page has been hidden. You or anyone else who accesses the page must click the “Verify” button to see anything.
The Google account login page will appear again, and if your password and two-factor authentication are entered correctly, your activity and Google search history will be revealed.
This sounds like a nice security method, but there’s one big flaw in this system that you should be aware of. If your browser has saved your Google account password (or if you’re using a password manager), it will autofill it for you and whoever tries to access your activity.
As such, the “Verify” step doesn’t do much if your browser is going to give the person your password. It’s something to keep in mind.
To disable this feature, simply go back to the “Manage My Activity Verification” settings page, select “Don’t Require Extra Verification,” and click “Save.” This is not enabled by default, so you’ll only have to turn it off if you previously enabled it.