Windows users can now see exactly how much of their personal data is being collected by Microsoft.
As well as basic records, such as the device you use, the company gathers more detailed information, such as the apps you have installed and how and when you use them.
The company says it uses this data to improve Windows, and keep it up-to-date and secure.
It has built a new tool for Windows 10, called the Windows Diagnostic Data Viewer, which will contain a breakdown of everything the operating system sends to Microsoft. The company says it will display:
Common Data, like the operating system’s name, the version, device ID, device class, diagnostic level selection and so on.
Device connectivity and configuration, such as device properties and capabilities, preferences and settings, peripherals, and device network information.
Product and service performance data that show device health, performance and reliability data, movie consumption functionality on the device and device file queries. It’s important to note that this functionality is not intended to capture user viewing or, listening habits.
Product and service usage data includes details about the usage of the device, operating system, applications, and services.
Software setup and inventory such as installed applications and install history, device update information.
“Our commitment is to be fully transparent on the diagnostic data collected from your Windows devices, how it is used, and to provide you with increased control over that data,” said Marisa Rogers, Microsoft’s Windows and Devices Group’s privacy officer.
“This is all part of our commitment to increase your trust and confidence in our products and services.”
An early preview of the Diagnostic Data Viewer will be available to Windows Insiders in the coming weeks. When it’s officially released, all Windows 10 users will be available to download it for free from the Microsoft Store.
Microsoft has also tweaked the existing Microsoft Privacy Dashboard.
“We’ve updated the Microsoft Privacy Dashboard with a new Activity History page which provides a clear and easy to navigate way to see the data that is saved with your Microsoft account,” Microsoft says.
“The Microsoft Privacy Dashboard allows you to manage your data and change what data is collected by adjusting the privacy settings on your device or browser at any time.”
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