In this article, we have mentioned some important Windows 11 settings that you should disable to protect your PrivacyPrivacy as much as possible.

In recent years, protecting PrivacyPrivacy in any field has become one of the most important concerns of users; Because they often worry about where their data might be used and how they can keep their activities more private. Although it is almost impossible to protect all information in today’s world completely, Windows 11 allows you to choose which data Microsoft has access to and which remains hidden from the company’s view.

Compared to Windows 10, the new version of the Windows operating system puts a lot of emphasis on privacy settings. In the same context, David Weston, Microsoft’s vice president of operating system security, tweeted that the company has recently added a new feature to keep Windows 11 secure, using which users can check when programs access sensitive parts such as the camera. And access the microphone.

Additionally, there are several new features in Windows 11 that you should check out and disable if necessary if you want to preserve PrivacyPrivacy as much as possible. Also, if you are still using Windows 10, refer to the Privacy Protection in Windows 10 article to protect the PrivacyPrivacy of this operating system.

Block Windows camera and microphone permissions

As long as you haven’t installed malware, you probably don’t need to worry about spying on someone using your computer’s microphone and camera; However, it’s a good idea to permanently block your apps from accessing these two so they don’t use them in the background without your knowledge. To manage apps that can use the microphone and camera, follow these steps:

  • First, go to the settings menu and select Privacy & Security.
  • To manage camera access, click Camera under App permissions.
  • Now disable the Camera access key.

By doing this, you block the access of all programs to the camera; Of course, if you regularly participate in voice and video calls, completely disabling the microphone and camera will be troublesome; because you have to reactivate them before each session; Therefore, if you want to allow a specific program to use the camera when needed, keep the Camera access option open and turn off the key for the programs you want from the available list. You can do the same process for the microphone.

Deleting activity history in Windows 11

Windows typically uses users’ activity history to track what they do on their PC, and it follows almost every website they interact with. Although Microsoft uses this information to improve the user experience in Windows and based on them, it gives valuable and relevant suggestions to the user, if Windows monitoring causes you concern, you can easily disable the mentioned settings. To turn off activity history and delete all collected data, follow the steps below:

  • Go to PrivacyPrivacy & Security in the Settings section and select Activity History in the Windows Permissions section.
  • Now disable the Store My activity history on this device button and click the Clear activity history button next to Clear activity for this account. Finally, hit Clear.

Turn off Windows Location Services

You know that one of the sensitive information that needs to be protected when using electronic devices is the location; Because there is a possibility that other people will get a lot of information about you based on where you are constantly traveling. In Windows, this option is turned on by default for specific reasons, and it gives you the correct directions to your desired destination or suggests nearby restaurants and hotels.

If you prefer not to allow your apps to use your location, you can disable access settings in just a few seconds or keep this option only for specific apps.

As we mentioned, you don’t need to disable location services for all apps, and if you want the location to be used only for some apps, keep location tracking on and then go to Let apps access your site. Here, you’ll see a list of Windows 11 apps that can access location. So, turn on the slider for the apps you want to use on-site (weather or maps) and enable and block other apps.

Do not allow optional diagnostic data to be sent.

One of the essential parts that you should pay attention to protect the Privacy of Windows is Diagnostic data. Suppose you need to become more familiar with this section. In that case, diagnostic data includes all the information about the computer, such as its use and general capabilities, and can determine whether the device is working as it should. In Windows 11, there are two types of diagnostic data to be aware of: required and optional.

In contrast, optional diagnostic data improves applications and services for a better user experience. This data usually consists of the user’s application activity and search history and does not need to be sent to Microsoft. Next, we’ll tell you how you can prevent Microsoft from accessing this type of data:

  • Go to PrivacyPrivacy & Security and select Diagnostics & Feedback in Windows permissions.
  • Now open the Diagnostic data menu and disable the Send optional diagnostic data option.
  • To delete the collected diagnostic data, go to the Delete diagnostic data menu and click Delete.

Note: If the computer you are using is managed by other people in the work environment, you may not be allowed to access these settings and delete the said data; So, so you can ask the said person to do it for you.

Turn off Windows ad tracking.

Windows 11 sends advertisements and related recommendations to the user using an advertising ID option. Its function is similar to how websites use cookies to provide advertisements according to the user’s interests. This advertising ID not only collects data when browsing the web but also tracks some of your information while using Windows programs.

Although turning off Advertising ID won’t reduce the number of ads you see on your device, it’s worth turning it off to increase PrivacyPrivacy. To disable this advertising ID, proceed as follows:

  • Enter the Privacy & Security window and select the General option in the Windows permissions section.
  • Finally, turn off Let Apps to show me personalized ads by using my advertising ID.

Delete Microsoft Cloud data.

No matter what exactly you do with your laptop or PC, it’s good to know that Microsoft tracks a lot of your activities and sends data to its server; Of course, as we said, according to Microsoft, this information is used to provide better services and improve people’s user experience, and the primary purpose of doing this is to deliver targeted advertisements to users.

However, if you want to delete all cloud data, including location services, search history, apps and services, media activity, and performance data, proceed as follows:

  • First, go to the Microsoft privacy settings page and sign in with the Microsoft account connected to Windows 11.
  • Now open the Location activity and delete all existing data.

For example, I have location services turned off in Windows 11, and there is no cloud data; But in the browser history, all the websites I have visited using Microsoft Edge are saved. To delete all this information, click Clear all browsing activity.

Similarly, you can expand the Search history section to see the history of all searches done with Bing, Windows Search, etc. In this section, all information will be deleted by clicking on the Clear all search history option.

By Pooyatp

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