Google Dashboard: Control Panel for Your Data

Early this morning, Google is launching a new feature that lets you view what data is being stored on a range of Google services. Google Dashboard also will let you control at least some of that data and how it’s used by Google and even delete it.

Dashboard provides a summary of the data in Google products you use while signed in (if you’re not signed in, that data isn’t associated with you). For now, Dashboard aggregates Gmail, the photo service Picasa, Calendar, Google Docs, Alerts, YouTube, Web history, and some others. As early as next week, Google will start adding more services, such as Checkout, Google Groups, and SideWiki.

Google says Dashboard wasn’t prompted by rising concerns about corporate use of people’s data. But I don’t doubt that Dashboard is intended to blunt complaints that Google collects so much data. In fact, Shuman Ghosemajumder, Google’s business product manager for trust and safety, made a point of telling me that the company had briefed some regulators around the world on Dashboard.

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