Do You Need to Worry About Privacy in Windows 10? Answer is NO

If you search about Windows 10 on Internet or if you talk about Windows 10 with anyone, the search or conversation starts with Windows 10 telemetry, automatic data collection and user's privacy. It seems everyone is so much worried about the privacy and is afraid of using Windows 10. But this topic will clear all your doubts and you'll find a detailed explanation of what kind of data Windows 10 collects and sends to Microsoft.

After reading this topic, you'll get the answer whether you should use Windows 10 or not!

First let's talk about what is telemetry and data collection which everyone talks about:

People say that Windows 10 automatically collects users data and sends it to Microsoft. People also claim that Windows 10 connects to several Microsoft servers automatically but they don't know why? People even claim that Windows 10 comes with a built-in keylogger which automatically stores your typed data and sends everything to Microsoft which is absolutely wrong and funny actually.

So what's the truth? What kind of data Windows 10 collects and why?

In today's world of Internet, almost all software collect some diagnostics data to improve software functionality and to add required features in future versions. If you check any software settings, you'll find such kind of options to send data to the developer. Similar to those software, Windows 10 also collects some diagnostics data and sends it to Microsoft servers. But this data is anonymous and only includes statistics and usage data such as which kind of apps are used frequently, what phrases are searched frequently, how do users find regular settings and options, etc. It helps Microsoft in showing helpful app suggestions in Start Menu, better search results in Cortana, latest Spotlight content on Lock Screen, etc.

Windows 10 provides settings and options to turn off data collection. You can control your privacy in Windows 10 by following our exclusive tutorial to apply best privacy settings in Windows 10:

[Guide] Best Privacy Settings for Windows 10

And if you are worried about Cortana Search and modern (metro) apps data collection, you can uninstall/disable them using following guides:

[Guide] How to Remove All Built-in Apps in Windows 10

[Windows 10 Tip] Remove Cortana, Edge, Contact Support, Feedback Apps

Common guys, Microsoft will never collect any personal information. They are not going to collect your credit card details, your software license keys, your mobile numbers, etc. They just collect some anonymous diagnostics data which is used by Microsoft to add new features in upcoming Windows 10 Insider Preview builds and to improve Windows 10 functionality. The collected data helps Microsoft in making Windows 10 a perfect OS.

People say you can't completely disable telemetry and data collection in Windows 10. That's true, so what? In fact Microsoft also mentions that. Check out following article which will clear your doubts:

Truth Behind Disallowing Telemetry and Data Collection Trick in Windows 10

Change_Telemetry_Data_Collection_Option_Windows_10_Group_Policy.png

Microsoft clearly mentions that even if you set the option to allow telemetry to '0', it'll still send some security related data to the company and what does this data contain? Suppose you downloaded a file from Internet and it contained a virus or spyware in it. The built-in security program Windows Defender or SmartScreen filter detected the suspicious item and cleaned the file. Windows 10 will send this information to Microsoft so that the company can add this information to the known suspicious items list and can prevent other people from downloading such files in future. This security data is only collected to improve functionality of Windows Defender and other security features of Windows 10 so that Microsoft can provide a safer environment to all Windows 10 users.

You can also disable this security data collection if you want. Check out following article for details:

[Windows 10 Tip] Disable Data Collection and Telemetry in Windows Defender

Disable_Cloud_Protection_Sample_Submission_Windows_Defender.png

Believe me, Windows 10 is the best operating system Microsoft ever developed and its safer and more secure than any previous Windows version, so stop worrying about telemetry and data collection issues. Also never use any 3rd party software or tweak to disable/block Microsoft server IP addresses. These software block several IPs and domains via Firewall rules and hosts file which can cause some serious issues as a side effect. Check out following article:

[Fix] Can’t Open Bing, MSN, Outlook or Other Microsoft Websites in Windows 10

So the bottomline is that Windows 10 is an absolutely safe OS and you can use it without any worries. Since its free to upgrade to Windows 10 from genuine Windows 7 and Windows 8/8.1 OS, you can hurry up and switch to Windows 10 now.

Windows 10 Now Available for Download and Free Upgrade

There are reports that Microsoft may add new options to completely disable telemetry and data collection in future Windows 10 builds but there is no confirmation from Microsoft. We can only wait and watch the development of Windows 10 Insider Preview builds.

So go ahead and install Windows 10 if you haven't installed it yet. You'll enjoy the OS, believe me!





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Posted in: Windows 10


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Comments

  • I have been using Windows 10 since Release Preview and even after so many Production Builds it is still not stable enough to upgrade from Windows 8.1 or Windows 7, though the added features are a nice addition.
    It will take some time to mature and let's hope that the new system of testing builds makes the process faster.

  • VG

    ^^ I'm using Windows 10 November Update build 10586 as primary OS in my personal machine and never faced any problem. :)

  • In this case you should consider yourself lucky Vishal...

    I also upgraded to Windows 10 last year on three entirely different machines, and it was a sub-optimal experience, to put it as politely as somehow possible. While all of the programs/games worked, you can't argue away the fact that the system "Just S**ks(TM)".

    The "start-menu revived" is a plain joke on more then just one level. The "Metrocalypse Launcher" is something I totally don't need (can't care less about them "apps" - thankfully one can send them to hell via some Powershell hackery), the sorting of the program items in the start menu is just brain-dead (you know, even Windows 8.1's universally hated "start screen" did a way better job) - luckily there's Start++ or Classic Shell to send that piece of integrated RetardWare to hell.

    Oh, speaking about the "all-new Start Menu" ... "breaks when there are >512 items" is a joke, right? "breaks where there are too many Metrocalyptic tiles pinned to the fail menu" is a joke, right?

    The Metrocalyptic "PC Settings" are just a pain in the rear. I truly don't understand what has been so fundamentally wrong with ye good ol Control Panel - other than that Touchscreen may have a hard time fingering the icons. If you ask me, they only got what they deserved. Microsoft should have split that c**p into "Desktop" and "Touchscreen Molester" SKUs ... I really do NOT need a smartphone UI (like Metrocalypse, Gnome Shell, Ubuntu Unity,...) on my desktop ... IF I would want a smartphone/tablet UI on my _desktop_ computer then I would run with Android's UI, that one is at least USABLE via a mouse and a keyboard (and yes, I know what I am talking about as I have a Android tablet that is connected to a BlueTooth Keyboard/Touchpad combo - beats Metrocalypye in terms of usability hands-down).

    Speaking about the Metrocalypse ... the totally broken DPI scaling is a joke, right? (and before you come again with "oh but I am running 10586 without any problems" ... you may want to give it a try on some LARGE 4K display first to see the horror for yourself).

    Speaking about the embedded spyware of NSAware 10 ... I'm not going to use Windows 10 ever again (there's actually another, more practical, reason as to why below) unless Microsoft implements a way to _TOTALLY_ disable not only the spyware but also re-introduces the "Notify, but do not download" in "Windows Updates" along with the "Hide this update" option ... given their "fantastic" track-history of totally flawed updates I don't feel like wanting them served against my will just to find my system in a totally broken state.

    Speaking about "totally broken state" ... Windows 10 managed to "nuke" itself TWICE on three totally different systems where the only thing they have in common are Nvidia cards. At one point last year I noticed that something must be wrong with the system (the boot-up didn't feel right) so I dug around only to find the graphics card being reported as with a yellow exclamation mark and "Code 43" (implying the card is "dead") in the device manager (one system having a Titan X, the second one having a GTX980 and the third one running a GTX750Ti). Ran "DDU" (in safe mode), booted Windows, re-installed the Nvidia driver ... perfect. Rebooted the system ... "Code 43" ... the "working state" only prevailed right after the driver installation; once you rebooted you were back to square one. And guess what ... after I trashed NSAware 10 and reverted to Windows 8.1 _ALL_ of the cards worked like they should ... no "Code 43: LULZ d00d, your cardz are dead.".

    Like it or not, but Windows 10 should actually be called 0.01 pre-Alpha 10583 ... and not only because of "nuking the video driver beyond repair" ... let us not venture into the fabulous world of audio issues with that piece of "face-typing-monkey's coded c**p of an OS".

    Oh, speaking about the "fluffy cloud" integration of Windows 10: "BitLocker key gets backed up to OneDrive for NSA's convenience" is a joke, right? I wouldn't even come to the epically retarded idea to upload ANY of my private keys - and be it SSH, PGP, ... private key - onto ANY cloud service at all ... either Microsoft is assimilated by the secret perverts agencies (which would explain the highly inferior product quality) or they fired the wrong guys and only kept complete idiots having not the slightest idea about security.

    Speaking about "fluffy cloud" again ... trying to run their business infrastructure off my internet service by DEFAULT is a affront ... the re-distribution of Windows Updates from your computer is actually THEFT. They steal your bandwidth (and keep in mind that there are still ISPs out there who enforce a monthly quota - even in the "oh-so-1st-world-country" USA) and they use up your electricity. And I stand my view that this is just blatant theft - if I would use somebody else's bandwidth to run my infrastructure through their internet service I would have cops dropping on me like there's no tomorrow).

    Also ... a few articles here and there about "you can trust Microsoft with your DiagTrack, UserTrack and Telemetry data" isn't enough to instill confidence when Microsoft is totally unwilling to openly document (in a technical in-depth pamphlet written by someone who has more than just one blonde brain-cell floating around in the void) what data is actually being collected.

    TL;DR: Our main (one of the systems is my daughter's machine) OS is now Linux ... and Windows (8.1, freed of any "Get NSAware 10" trojans and "Telemetry"/"DiagTrack"/"UserTrack" malware, Windows Update disable in favor of manual hotfix deployment because the monthly "ditching malicious hotfixes because Microsoft feels like computer sabotage is so much fun" has become too much of a pain) is just there to run the games I can't run in Wine or through Linux Steam (like Witcher 3 and stuff).

    While this might represent just my personal viewpoint, it at least comes from someone who not only messes about with computers for the last 34 years but messes about with the tin cans as a profession on a daily base - I'm not "Generation Mousecursor-Tossers" at all.

  • VG,

    I think that you need to have a very careful read through Microsoft's privacy statement for Windows 10 before you go making claims that nobody's privacy is at risk. It's irresponsible to make these sorts of claims, as a lot of people are likely to have their concerns assuaged by your article as they respect your opinion. However, in this case it's completely wrong of you to simply say that "Windows 10 is the best operating system Microsoft [has] ever developed and its safer and more secure than any previous Windows version", as this just isn't even the point.

    Microsoft's verbiage about what they intend to do, or may intend in the FUTURE to do, with ANY data that they collect from you is deliberately "broad" and "vague". This includes EVERYTHING that Cortana learns about you, which if you've forgotten includes scanning all of your personal emails, and even files that you don't really expect to have Microsoft trawling through at its leisure.

    The truly chilling part is how none of this was really made known to people up front (just the cry of "Windows 10 is free, Windows 10 is free, Windows is free"), UNTIL people started to make their (legitimate) privacy concerns known, & that most of the settings to turn off various different parts of this invasive data collection was buried somewhere in various levels of menu pages, tabs and settings. In the past, data collection had to be spelled out in detail (hence the proliferation of privacy statements online everywhere) and had to be collected for *specific* purposes, so that people could make an INFORMED decision about whether to opt INTO sending telemetry data, personal data etc. With Windows 10, you now have to opt OUT of everything, and even then there are still sections that Microsoft simply won't ALLOW you to opt out of, and yet they refuse to be specific about what they intend to do with our data. Just whose data is it?

    How would you like it if you invited me into your home, and I went into your computer and searched through ALL of your personal files, emails, photos and documents, making whatever notes about them that I wanted (all to help me help you of course), and I also proceeded to search through every scrap of data I could find in your entire house (not just the places that you THOUGHT you gave me permission to search through), and I searched in places (akin to private folders on your computer) where you thought that you had put personal, private or maybe even "dubious" information, securely hidden from any prying eyes. How about if I then wouldn't even tell you EXACTLY what I was planning to do with all of my notes? Notice, they're MY notes now, not YOUR data anymore, and I can do with them whatever I please, at any time, now or in the future.

    Would you be comfortable with that? And even if you said that you didn't want me to have all that information about you, how about if I would only agree to allow you to keep SOME of it private? Would you be happy with that scenario? I highly doubt it! And even if you said that you would be OK with all that, I don't think you'd be being completely honest about how it would make you feel. As I walk out the door with MY notebook of copious notes that I've recorded about you etc, I kind of think that you'd be feeling more than a little bit violated at this point, as you slowly realize that there's nothing you can do about it. So, please be a bit more thoughtful about the advice you're giving to your readers. There are legitimate concerns that people have about Microsoft's disturbing new practices, so please don't fob them off with platitudes about how "safe and secure" Windows 10 is. Or that it was a "free" upgrade. People may not have paid any actual "money" for it, but might just may have paid with something far more valuable.

  • The user should have a choice as to whether or not ANY of their usage information is sent to MS servers. The fact is, Microsoft has NOT been completely transparent on this matter. We also know that the level usage data sent to MS servers is unprecedented. You may as well have 40 different Microsoft spies standing behind you, looking over you shoulder while you use your computer. It is creepy, at least, and an unprecedented level of spying on what goes on in OUR homes and office, on OUR computers, and over OUR internet service.

    If we given in to this ridiculous invasion of our privacy, then what is left. What else do we have that belongs to us. What right does Microsoft have to know everything you do, every website you visit, every term you search on a search engine, every game you play, every minute you are in Windows 10?

    Someone will find a way to stop this egregious invasion of our personal privacy, and that person will be celebrated as a silicon hero.

  • This is a bulls**t. Microsoft never say or you can't check EXACTLY what data collected, only say "security data" and that's it. You have not choice to decide you want to send data to Microsoft or not. It's not fair and very very dangerous!!!

  • Extremely well said Bubba Loui! And you actually made me remember something. There's a program called "O&O ShutUp10", by a German company called O&O Software GmbH in Berlin.

    I just ran it again now, and "something" had re-enabled one of the telemetry settings that I had disabled with this program.

  • WOW how much did MS pay you to say this bull c**p? Check out a few windows forums and they all say the same, Windows 10 is spyware end of!!

  • VG

    ^^ Its my personal opinion about Windows 10 and everyone is free to share his own experience and opinion about Windows 10. I never post any paid articles. Everyone knows it.

  • I agree with VG at some points. There is much hype about Windows 10 telemetry than the reality.

  • Guys, don't waste your time. Find where Microsoft is lying, sue them and get your millions!

  • Yes W10 is quite good and much better than W8/8.1 (though W7 is still better at some points), and as far as privacy is concerned I don't think that MS is stealing our data because they are a reliable company (at least to me), but I still strictly think that they should include an option to disable the data collection completely because it should totally depend on us whether we want to send our data or not.

  • you give the answer your self : what kind of data Windows 10 collects, 2e : dont tell people your opinion is thru ! bring this article out in just your opinion

    the fact that windows 10 getting his update from other computers then there servers ( torrent based ) is save in your opinion

    well in my opinion NOT

  • This is one of the most stupid, dangerous and misleading articles I've ever read on this particular issue.

    You do not deserve privacy and, by direct implication, do not deserve the freedom that comes with it.

    This attitude will see us all enslaved eventually. Stuff like this just speeds up the very slow grind towards it.

    Well played. :-(

  • ^^ Everyone has personal opinions and we should respect them. I agree that data collection in Windows 10 is not good but I also agree with VG's points that the data collection is not harmful in Windows 10.

  • First - the main problem of 10 is in the EULA - it's a bit general cand can be interpreted. They reserve the right to remove some aplications from your computer - wich can be helpfull in compatibility issues - but they let it in general way. Ans so on. Also about the data transmitted it is a mention that in some case they may transfer data who can identify you - by accident of course, but may happened.

    Also I also agree that you are very lucky to not have issues with Windows 10. It's true, in some cases there are no issues. I have it on 4 computers at home and 4 at work.
    At home, 3 works perfect, my main PC don't. I've got issues in web browsers - Ie and Egde on Twitter and facebook - scrolling a bit gived black screen with only restart button solution. In TH2 this was fixed, but now my VFD display don't work well - a JRiver plugins fails to work.
    At work everything was fine until TH2, but after that there are nework problems, Net Use command for printers to map as LPT don't work or if it work it's lost after few hours even if using with persistent:yes. On computers who got the update form 7 to TH to TH2 even if I map the printers and net use says they are ok, I cannot print to them - on fresh TH2 I can print only one one of them.
    Also there are some glitces during IE or E#dge use - cannot copy/paste on some sites - even in compatibilty moe - again in TH2.
    Finally I have the impresion that each bug fix bring 2 or more other new bugs. Like in a perpetual beta version.

  • "First lets talk about" **let's** - it's an abbreviation for "let us."

    On the point of Windows 10, it's obviously an unfinished OS - many Control Panel items have been moved to the Settings App, but not all. "Modern" apps are built on an incomplete, bloated framework based on .NET, which was also bloated, full of security holes, and slow as well as memory hungry (it used JIT compilation, which added to the apps' size).

    Win10 didn't even ship with DX12, which was promised. Meh. I'll stick with Win7 until a *real* reason to upgrade comes along.

  • My problem with not being able to "fully turn off" telemetry and the vagueness of the Microsoft EULA is that the scope of information leakage could very well expand without my knowledge through the simple fact that automatic updates are required. Not to mention that Microsoft has, several times now, put out updates that revert security settings and abuse the "important updates" label in prior versions of its OS to include the Windows 10 GWX nagware. I need a reliable OS for my business (of one) that doesn't promise to potentially leak proprietary, or protected information. If the intent is to screw small businesses that can't or won't shell out for Enterprise, mission accomplished.

    Most of the specialized applications I use are on Windows, but I am already investigating Unix alternatives. If, in the future, I need to upgrade to 10, so be it. I'll configure a separate network with a whitelist only firewall and suffer...

  • "So the bottomline is that Windows 10 is an absolutely safe OS and you can use it without any worries."

    What you don't do is analyze the EULA and its ramifications. Since it also makes you cede your legal rights in favor of arbitration, it's a dead end if/when Microsoft ever does act as the EULA allows. When that happens, I will remember this site and your given advice when I am deciding how to attain justice.

  • I don't see why Microsoft needs to spin up a harddisk (drive D:) that doesn't contain any components and start dividing into the immense source trees for its compatibility telemetry. all "app" related data is on C:.

    Microsoft shouldn't be surprised that people get all paranoid if services don't do what they are advertised to do.

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