Computers & Electronics

I want to learn about Android & Google - give your suggestions.

  • Last Updated:
  • Feb 17th, 2018 12:50 am
[OP]
Deal Addict
Dec 12, 2009
4764 posts
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Toronto

I want to learn about Android & Google - give your suggestions.

As the title says, I want to learn about Android & Google. Can you recommend some web sites, books or other?

Top of my list for both would be maximizing privacy and security.

For Android, managing files, storage, connecting to devices.

For Google: Gmail, Google account, and ???
12 replies
Deal Addict
Feb 4, 2018
1009 posts
48 upvotes
Google platforms are basically giving your entire life information to Google.

You can't really avoid that anymore. But there are some things you can do:

1. Get a Nexus 6P and run CopperheadOS, one of the most secure Android platforms.

2. Don't use Gmail. Preferably you'd use your ISP's provided E-mail if you have one. Otherwise something like ProtonMail is a good alternative.

Instead of using Google as a search engine, you might try Duckduckgo, or Startpage.com

These things minimize privacy issues.

And don't sync anything to Google from your phone. Disable account syncing. Backup things manually (by connecting to a PC and manually accessing the phone's storage.
Deal Expert
Aug 2, 2004
33799 posts
7444 upvotes
East Gwillimbury
There is no privacy and security is subjective.

Even if you stay off the grid. Your friends that have your contact information on their phones will have it stored in their gmail account.

Android

It is a open system for the most part. Low level access will require root access. The file system is Linux, you can access almost everything. I suggest you start with a File Manager, my preference is ES File Explorer Pro. This one app will give you access to everything you requested. Manage files, storage, and connecting to other devices like NAS or PCs

Google

A gmail account is the key to the google ecosystem. It is your one access to all things google. A gmail account gives you

Google Apps or G Suite (Sheets, Docs, Slides) an office clone
Google Drive with 15 Gigs of storage
Google Chrome - Login to have your pages follow you and or bookmarks
Hangouts
Google Play (app store account automatically created with gmail account)
Google Assistant (tracks your searches)
Google Maps (remembers your locations and places visited)

This is not a comprehensive list. It is just a partial list.

Android and google maps is smart too. When you launch google maps, it asks for your home address and work address. I chose to leave mine blank. But it knows my home address because google maps knows my phone stays in one location at night and infers that it is my home address. I will get prompts telling me traffic and time to get home when I leave my office. The address is wrong, but it is only off by one house. It's pretty scary.

I also use gmail app to read my company email and again, it knows my work address because it knows I spend the working hours at that address and it knows my work email address. Put two and two together and it knows where I work. When I leave my house it gives me a traffic report with ETA to my office without me requesting it.

Google assistant, if you have a google home device, it tracks everything you ask it. I can see every request ever made including when I ask it for the time and weather.

Google already has a file on you because you have friends and family that store your contact information on their phone. It isn't just one phone, probably multiple phones and thus google can cross reference the information to validate it.

It's your choice, you can embrace it, but you can't avoid it. Privacy doesn't exist in the internet age
Deal Fanatic
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Mar 17, 2006
6884 posts
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Burlington
Okay, Roy in Toronto, what is privacy to you?
I see that you drive a Ranger and your hydro bill increased by 40% in Dec/Jan.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Dec 12, 2009
4764 posts
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Toronto
Thanks @Poutsounia & @Gee Good suggestions!
konsensei wrote: Okay, Roy in Toronto, what is privacy to you?
I see that you drive a Ranger and your hydro bill increased by 40% in Dec/Jan.
I tend to agree with @Gee
There is no privacy and security is subjective.
Some people are an open book and others are not. I prefer to be the latter. Say for example if I had a tattoo on a certain part of my anatomy I don't want the world to know about I wouldn't go to nude beaches. I'd try to turn off the lights or slip under the covers before removing my undies. Definitely no photos.

No Facebook, no Twitter, no LinkedIn and I do try to use DuckDuckGo where ever possible but I have to admit Google Scholar is good for research. I use separate emails for different things and try to turn off all tracking. Home is the plaza a mile or two away. Nobody is in my phone by their real name. If someone steals my phone and gets past my passwords they are not going to learn to much about the people I know. I have more than 1 phone and different people in each. One is a Speakout burner. I realize that Google on the other hand does assimilate information - resistance is futile but I can make it more challenging.

Looking forward to reading some more suggestions and hopefully some websites / books I can read.
Deal Expert
Aug 2, 2004
33799 posts
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East Gwillimbury
ROYinTO wrote: No Facebook, no Twitter, no LinkedIn
I thought I was the only one. I don't even use WhatsApp

My home is set to Upper Canada Mall

One more thing to mention. If you have google assistant on your phone or a google home device, it is constantly listening to you.
Deal Addict
Feb 4, 2018
1009 posts
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Gee wrote: I thought I was the only one. I don't even use WhatsApp

My home is set to Upper Canada Mall

One more thing to mention. If you have google assistant on your phone or a google home device, it is constantly listening to you.
I only actively use YouTube, and some local forums like this one. I have Facebook with zero information, zero pics and fake name, just log into the occasional account that requires Facebook access. I don't have Twitter, Instagram.

I have Whatsapp, but don't use it. I think I'll delete it off my phone.

This is the society we get when everyone wants everything for free. I like Open Source, but even that is being monetized (thru donations or sponsorship from some big wig). The truth is very few select people are able to provide these services, and they need to eat too, like the rest of us.

So what does that do? When the product is free, you ARE the product.
Deal Expert
Aug 2, 2004
33799 posts
7444 upvotes
East Gwillimbury
Poutsounia wrote: I have Whatsapp, but don't use it. I think I'll delete it off my phone.

So what does that do? When the product is free, you ARE the product.
I only have 5 apps on my phone and I pay for all my apps. Don’t need to see ads.

I hate WhatsApp. It takes your phone number and scans your entire phone book and asks all your friends to join. They have a huge database of everyone’s cell number. Validated because they cross reference these numbers from multiple sources. Their data base is more accurate than anyone else because they include all carriers from the entire planet.

I’ve never installed the app, yet they have all my info because I have friends and colleagues that has my info stored on their phone.

Using a fake name for FaceBook or an obscure email address doesn’t guarantee privacy. If you constantly use it, it identifies you. It’s like me calling you Mr White. Everyone will know who Mr White is by their activity. Just like hackers and their handles.
Deal Addict
Feb 4, 2018
1009 posts
48 upvotes
Using a fake name for FaceBook or an obscure email address doesn’t guarantee privacy. If you constantly use it, it identifies you. It’s like me calling you Mr White. Everyone will know who Mr White is by their activity. Just like hackers and their handles.
Yup, it's true. Which is why I can count on my fingers the number of times I have actually used the account for something.
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Apr 30, 2009
2524 posts
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Ottawa
ROYinTO wrote: Thanks @Poutsounia & @Gee Good suggestions!


I tend to agree with @Gee

Some people are an open book and others are not. I prefer to be the latter. Say for example if I had a tattoo on a certain part of my anatomy I don't want the world to know about I wouldn't go to nude beaches. I'd try to turn off the lights or slip under the covers before removing my undies. Definitely no photos.

No Facebook, no Twitter, no LinkedIn and I do try to use DuckDuckGo where ever possible but I have to admit Google Scholar is good for research. I use separate emails for different things and try to turn off all tracking. Home is the plaza a mile or two away. Nobody is in my phone by their real name. If someone steals my phone and gets past my passwords they are not going to learn to much about the people I know. I have more than 1 phone and different people in each. One is a Speakout burner. I realize that Google on the other hand does assimilate information - resistance is futile but I can make it more challenging.

Looking forward to reading some more suggestions and hopefully some websites / books I can read.
you do realize that you just gave up all this important information and handed it over to Google?
They will use their smart bots to re-work it and triangulate your location so proper ad can be shown on your browsing session...

Joking, obviously
IT Services provider in Ottawa area.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Dec 12, 2009
4764 posts
2353 upvotes
Toronto
golden_m wrote: you do realize that you just gave up all this important information and handed it over to Google?
They will use their smart bots to re-work it and triangulate your location so proper ad can be shown on your browsing session...

Joking, obviously
I had to stop and think about that for a minute. Either I mentally turn off the ads or Adblock Plus is doing its job. Maybe a bit of both.
Then again, I see the humour. I've always wanted a tin foil fedora ...
[OP]
Deal Addict
Dec 12, 2009
4764 posts
2353 upvotes
Toronto
Gee wrote: There is no privacy and security is subjective.
...
A gmail account is the key to the google ecosystem.
...
It's your choice, you can embrace it, but you can't avoid it. Privacy doesn't exist in the internet age
I'm wondering if doing things like signing up for a gmail account using a disposable email address and using Google Play gift cards are worth the effort to hinder ID mining. I would have no interest in using a gmail account other than access services.
Deal Expert
Aug 2, 2004
33799 posts
7444 upvotes
East Gwillimbury
ROYinTO wrote: I'm wondering if doing things like signing up for a gmail account using a disposable email address and using Google Play gift cards are worth the effort to hinder ID mining. I would have no interest in using a gmail account other than access services.
It won’t hinder it because your friends and family will have your contact information in their phones. As I mentioned earlier. Google only needs a few of your friends to cross reference the information and they have validated your existence.

Even if you don’t have a gmail address. If someone in your circle of friends uses gmail and sends you an email, google has access to the email because it went through their servers. Any personal information mentioned in that email is now accessible to google.

ID mining does not necessarily identify you. You can set up any random email ie Bigbird@gmail.com. It is the use of the email that identifies an entity that has a phone number, the people you call, the emails sent on it, the apps you purchase as that all ties into an identity. Keep in mind, your phone tracks your location and that can be all tied to that single email.

If they dig hard enough, they will find your true identity. It isn’t hard at all.

The only way to avoid it, is to live a Mennonite life style.

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