Over the weekend a recent change in Google Chrome’s behavior got a lot of attention: when you login to a Google service like Gmail or Google Drive on the web, the browser will show that you’re also logged into Chrome.

But that caused a bit of concern among folks who lamented that it meant Google would automatically have access to your browsing history, cookies, and other data.

Previously, if you used Chrome without signing into your Google account in the browser settings, your data would not be synchronized and sent to Google’ servers. And according to Google’s privacy policy for Chrome, logging in meant that it would be.

As it turns out, the situation’s a bit more complicated than that: signing into a Google web service will sign you into the browser… but Chrome won’t automatically start synchronizing your data unless you tell it to.

Google Chrome manager and engineer Adrienne Porter Felt took to Twitter to explain.

The new behavior is designed to make it easier for users who share computers to remember to log out. Sign into Google on the web and you’ll see your account picture in the upper right corner of the browser. Sign out from the browser and it’ll sign you out on the web as well (or vice versa).

But logging into Gmail in a Chrome browser that you haven’t already signed into will not automatically cause your bookmarks, history, passwords, and other account data to be uploaded to Google’s servers. In order to do that, you would have to explicitly turn sync on.

I’m still not sure how useful the new feature is for most users, and Google probably could have done a better job of communicating the changes and the thinking behind them. But better late than never, I guess.

via xda-developers

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5 replies on “Update: Chrome 69 does not automatically sync your data without permission”

  1. If they did without asking I think that would be it for me (switch browsers).

    1. Thats the next step. Slowly but surely Google takes everything away in favor of automation for the sake of “convenience”.

  2. Google is getting too sketchy. As much as I hate the SJW behavior at Firefox, I’m going to move to that for a while and investigate the tools available for Brave browser.

    1. I don’t find them in the least bit sketchy. I like Chrome. I’m going to keep using it. Actually I think I might switch my daily driver desktop from Linux to a Chrome OS box. The only thing holding me back is my carefully setup taskbars on Xfce. I am pretty used to my large, easy-to-see day, date, and time setup. I’d miss it.

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