Most people should already know that Google might just hold the biggest database of personal information in the world. Every time someone mentions what information Google is collecting, kindly pointing them towards any of the company’s services will confirm that it is gathering data from every single one of its services, no matter what it is. And if you have ever used your voice to control Google, you may want to know that the company stores audio recordings of your voice too.
How and why does this happen?
Whenever you use a Google account to use one of the company’s services, data is usually collected for one of two reasons: advertising or improving the product itself. In this case, Google collects voice data so that its voice-controlled services can understand you better. At the same time, the company can take a look at the data and see what kind of searches you are interested in or what commands you are shouting at your phone so it instantly knows more about you. Data collection from Google happens automatically in all its services so if you are entirely unfamiliar with how all this works, I would suggest reading our tutorial on managing your settings via the relatively new privacy hub.
Delete saved recordings
Start by going to Google’s Voice & Audio Activity page. Log in your Google account and you will be able to see what recordings Google has already saved. You may need to scroll down and click on “See More” to check out the full list but I am sure you have a good idea of how the data looks by now.
Clicking on the “Play” button will let you see exactly what Google has recorded while simultaneously being creeped out by hearing your voice from a few months ago.
To delete these recordings, check their individual boxes and click on the “Delete” button that will appear on the top right corner. For a faster way, click on the three-dotted icon near the top and select “Delete Options”.
The “Advanced” option will let you delete everything since the dawn of time so feel free to make your choice and remove anything you want from here. You will not be able to recover anything you delete so be certain before continuing.
Stop Google from recording your voice
While you are still on the same Voice & Audio Activity page, you may want to block Google from recording further sessions. To do that, click on the three-dotted icon again and select “Settings”.
There should be a single option that describes how Google is recording your voice searches and commands so just turn the toggle off and you are done. The same setting, among others, can also be found in the Google Settings app of Android devices so you can also turn it off there if you wish.