Well, This is Terrifying: You Can Now Download Your Entire Google Search History

You can tell a lot about a person from a quick look through their search history – the good, bad, ugly, the seriously questionable, and the downright mortifying.  

After all, these days, Google can act as our doctor, therapist, life coach, and the best (and worst) teacher you’ve ever had. And it’s 24/7. 

Offering an intimate glimpse into your life post-Internet boom, you can now take a walk down Google memory lane in just minutes. First rolled out as an experiment last year, you can now download your entire Google search history, and get it all in one place, says the unofficial Google blog, Google Operating System. 

All you have to do is visit your Web History Page, click the gear icon in the top right corner, and select “download.” You’ll then see a warning box asking users to permit two-step verification to avoid downloading their search to public computers (because that could get embarrassing).  

You then click “Create Archive,” and a zip file that includes all your search queries will go into a “Takeout” folder in your Google Drive account. You can then download the file to your computer.  

There may be some juicy and incriminating searches of times past that you won’t be reminded of – only searches you made while logged into your Google account are included in the file.  

If your search history is too cringe-worthy to keep as a memento of your apparent “craziness,” you can delete it forever as quickly as you downloaded it. 

On the Web history page where the archive is downloaded, click the rear icon and select “remove items” instead, where you’ll find an option to remove the items “since the beginning of time.” 

Unlike those questionable haircuts in the photos at your parents’ place and in your friends’ yearbooks, at least one potentially embarrassing element of your past can be erased for good. 

We know what you’ll be doing when you get home from work.


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