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Google Introduces an “Incognito Mode” for Assistant Among Other Safety Features

A Nest Mini smart speaker in a very dark room.
Chris J Mitchell/Shutterstock

Google knows that privacy is a big concern, especially when it concerns voice assistants and smart speakers. To that end, the company introduced a revamped Safety Center, a place to access all your privacy settings. It also announced a few privacy-focused features—like a Guest Mode for Google Assistant, that acts a bit like Incognito Mode for browsers.

While Guest Mode might sound like something for visitors to your home, that’s not the point at all. When you activate Guest Mode in Google Assistant, it won’t offer personalized suggestions or record your history to your Google Account. You get a temporary period of no history.

Activating Guest Mode is easy too, just say, “Hey Google, turn on Guest mode.” When you’re ready for personalized results again, tell it to turn off Guest Mode. You’ll be able to access Guest Mode on smartphones and Nest Hub devices.

Google has some other new safety features for you as well, such as cross-app notifications. Have you ever logged into Gmail and received a suspicious previous login notification? It likely told you about a recent login that seemed to come from somewhere unusual.

That’s a helpful feature, but not if you don’t happen to log into the specific service that saw the problem. Starting soon, you won’t have to be in Gmail to see that alert. You can be in any Google app, and it will notify you about a suspicious warning.

And if you find security settings hard to find, Google’s latest change will help too. You can now search for phrases like “Is my Google Account secure?” to find a summary of your security settings and make changes.

These are small but welcome steps in giving you control of your security and privacy when it comes to Google accounts. Good stuff.

Source: Google

Josh Hendrickson Josh Hendrickson
Josh Hendrickson is the Editor in Chief of Review Geek and is responsible for the site's content direction. He has worked in IT for nearly a decade, including four years spent repairing and servicing computers for Microsoft. He’s also a smart home enthusiast who built his own smart mirror with just a frame, some electronics, a Raspberry Pi, and open-source code. Read Full Bio »