So, by now a lot of people have migrated to the Windows 10 experience willingly or by having to buy a new computer that came with it pre – loaded. It has added a lot of features to its portfolio and some of these are important to fine tune. Given the fact that is now heavily dependent on cloud computing integration, privacy has become a very important concern. There can be other people accessing your private data, work related information, private passwords etc. Therefore, it is very important to maintain the right settings to protect yourself as much as possible. You can follow along with this simple 10 step checklist, that you need to set right away.
Fresh Install your Windows 10
To begin with, you need to do a fresh / clean install of Windows 10. If you have bought your laptop or branded desktop then chances are that it is full of bloatware. These extra apps need to be removed as a lot of them as just there to send information about you back to the manufacturers.
Turn off your location
Nearly all the browsers have location setting on by default and now Windows 10 also has this turned on from the get go. Unless your using a lot of google maps from your desktop or laptop, you can leave this feature off. For most people they do that from their phone, so it makes no sense to have this set to on for your computer as well. This could send information to advertisers and hackers as to where you are based.
Do Not Sync
Another new feature is the ability to sync your experience across all devices using one account. At first glance, this seems useful as you don’t need to enter your passwords and data every time. However, if anyone hacks into one device they effectively hack into all of your devises. So, turn this off.
Lock It Up
This one is very simple and obvious but also hugely impactful if gone wrong. You should not let your lock screen show notifications or have Cortana on it or have your email address plastered right at the front. Hackers can use this to crack your password.
Go invisible to Advertisers
So, with the new windows, advertisement gathering data is now inbuilt and cannot be turned off completely. What you can do is to turn off the personalized ID that is on by default. It tracks everything you do to your single encrypted unique ID. Turning this off means data is being collected but at least it is not all being sorted in one ID. So, a profile of your activities is not being created under one ID.
Anti-Virus / Anti Malware
We all know we need to have this installed on our computer, yet you would be surprised to know the statistics of how many people still don’t have anti-virus installed. Not having one is just about asking for trouble these days. There are lots of great free options like Avast
We all loved her in Halo but her purpose here is not the same as the popular video game unfortunately. The truth is that she is always collecting data and information about what you’re doing. Then sending it to Microsoft. She needs to go
Don’t setup a Microsoft account for login screen
If you do this then all your computer activities, email and office activities are all being logged into one account. It is best to keep access to your computer and email separate.
Turn off CEIP for Windows 10
You need to turn of customer experience improvement program (CEIP) as it is basically just collecting your computer usage data, hardware and everything else you do on your computer. From what we can tell there no ‘customer experience improvement’ for sending your data to Microsoft. Unless they pay you ????