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Starting to hate Google. Can I keep android but escape google?

Discussion in 'Android Lounge' started by jungleexplorer, Jan 10, 2014.

  1. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    Google is becoming to envasive and insecure. They are building NSA level profiles on people and opening that info up for the world to see. Recent events have opened my eyes to this. These events include me finding more then 200 contacts hidden in my google profile that Google added (I did not add them). Some of these people were people that I have not seen or talked to in decades and others were the names of about every single person in my extended family, even 6 month old babies. The only possible way that google could have found out that I even knew some of these people is if they have been scanning every single word I have transmitted through a google service, like gmail, since I first opened my gmail account when it first came out. This is an evasion of privacy. When I found this out, I wondered why google would be building a profile on me and including every person that I have ever known in it. Well, google answered that question when they announced in a email I recieved today that I can send email to people I know, even if I don't know their email address. Here is the header of that message.

    Gmail update: Reach more people you know

    Ever wanted to email someone you know, but haven't yet exchanged email addresses? Starting this week, when you're composing a new email, Gmail will suggest your Google+ connections as recipients, even if you haven't exchanged email addresses yet.

    What this simply means is that now anyone can email anyone without even knowing that person.

    This is on top of Google giving themselves the right to use your name, face, pictures and statements in ads without you even knowing about it.

    The bottom line is that Google is aggressively trying to find out everything they can about you and using that info to find out everything they can about your friends and family and then using that data however they want to and opening it up to anyone they want to.



    I am ready to jump off the google ship. My only question is, can I do that and keep my android phone?
     

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  2. John Bean

    John Bean Happy Wanderer
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    Of course you can keep your phone. Just create a new Google account to allow access to the Play store and use it for nothing else, or (better given your Googlephobla) just don't log into Google at all and install apps from some other source.

    You could for example sideload a different app store app (Amazon, say) and use that as your source of apps. Google encourage you to use their "Gapps" of course (gmail, google+, whatever) but they can't force you to do so :)
     
  3. codesplice

    codesplice Elite Recognized Moderator
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    Not exactly.

    [​IMG]

    You can easily configure your Gmail Settings to restrict this type of contact to only people that you have circled, or even disabled it entirely. You're in control.

    If you actually care to know a bit more about how this handy-dandy new feature will work, I highly recommend that you read this post which addresses a lot of the privacy-related questions with this new initiative. Or check out this writeup for a more in-depth look at how this deal will work.

    As for the Shared Endorsements, you can also opt-out of that as well.

    If you still don't want to have anything to do with Google, that's fine (and John Bean's suggestions should get you pointed in the right direction). I just want to make sure you're not leaving their services out of the infectious Google paranoia that seems to be propagated by people who don't have or don't understand the facts.
     
  4. dibblebill

    dibblebill Android Expert
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    And you can even flash a custom ROM and just NOT install GApps packages. I recommend OmniROM, as many of them (myself included), are tinfoil hat types. Get a custom ROM, don't install Google Apps, get F-Droid (or Amazon App Store), ???, have fun.


    EDIT: Also, at least you are given the choice to either consent and use Google Apps/products, or not consent and abstain from using them. There are entities who do the same and don't give you that option- it's consent or jail ;)
     
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  5. PaulS

    PaulS Android Enthusiast
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  6. funkylogik

    funkylogik share the love peeps ;)
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    Agree with everyone above. Your phone will run just fine without gapps. Install a custom rom without gapps and youll only have the open source google apps on there that make the phone function.
    Youll have no gmail or playstore but you probably dont want them anyway :thumbup:
     
  7. Stuntman

    Stuntman Android Expert
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    You will only receive one email from someone trying to reach you via the G+ profile. You then get the option of allowing this person to continue communicating with you. If you do not opt in, you will not get any more emails from this person.

    The person emailing you this way will in no way be able to find out what your email address is (unless you actually posted it publicly somewhere like on you G+ profile). This means they will not then be able to just send you emails through other means.

    You have the option of turning this off as others have mentioned.

    Here's a good article explaining what this new G+/Gmail feature really means: On openness and why you may find value in the new Google+/Gmail settings

    For now, I'm leaving this option on. If I don't like it, I can always turn it off.
     
  8. funkylogik

    funkylogik share the love peeps ;)
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    Yeah im keeping it on. Im not very protective of my email addy :)
     
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  9. ToBeAnonymous

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    for your first discovery those contacts got in there from past android based devices that your gmail was automatically set to back up any contact info you entered into any of those devices. Just cause you delete the contact of your phone does not delete it off that back up list you would have to go in on a computer and delete them manually of there
     
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  10. Slug

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    That's the point, Funky.... it doesn't expose your email. The worst that can happen is you get a one-time email originally sent to your G+ profile. If you don't reply the sender never discovers your actual email address.
     
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  11. Shocky

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    Install Cyanogenmod, by default it doesn't come with Google Apps, just side-load the apps you want from another source. ;)
     
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  12. funkylogik

    funkylogik share the love peeps ;)
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    Yeah sorry should have made that clearer. I understand that. Was just sayin, i dont care what mail i get lol :D
     
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  13. John Bean

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    Everybody is entitled to their opinion about Google's ethics, and nobody knows what may happen to all that collected data in years to come. Personally I'm not concerned about it but the OP clearly is; that doesn't make him paranoid in my book, just less trusting than me.

    In any case, just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get you :)
     
  14. zuben el genub

    zuben el genub Android Expert
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    I never use the Gmail app or webpage. I use POP3, and Thunderbird has real good filters. + is blocked entirely. If I catch it on the PC, I don't see it in Aquamail.

    I do understand the facts. I'm simply defending my right to say and post nothing if I have nothing to say. I'm simply not socially minded.
     
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  15. Sandgoose

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    root your phone, install titanium backup, install all the apps you want, back them up with titanium to apk files and keep them safe, remove the google account from the phone.

    you could always use https://f-droid.org/ too they have a sort of limited selection of apps they let you use apks.

    or you could get full apps in apks if you search around but really wouldn't trust some of the sources.
     
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  16. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    This is my first android device, so there is no possible way they came from a backup. Besides, I no for a fact that some of these contacts google added have zero digital footprints. some are 6 months old babies and some are Amazon Indians that live out in the jungle and hunt with bows and arrows. How google found out I even knew these people and why google took it upon themselves to serectly add them to my profile is concerning to me.
     
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  17. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    I already rooted my phone after I recently updated to jelly bean, which resulted in the afore mentioned contacts being revealed. Is Super Backup as good as Titanium? I used it after the JB update and it did fine. thanks
     
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  18. funkylogik

    funkylogik share the love peeps ;)
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    Ive always gone back to Titanium but if the other app works for you then thats fine :thumbup:
    Just dont restore system apps
    If you arent going to log into your google account then make sure your contacts are saved locally.
    Do these Amazonian tribesmen have phones/computers? What kind of info does google have on them?
     
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  19. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    Thanks for the defense John. I am not a nut case paranoid person. I understand that there are certain trade offs when it comes to privacy by using the internet. My problem with google goes way beyond this question. Google is becoming more and more aggressive in forcing it's way on people and I don't like that. They have taken over other services that I use and brought them under the Google umbrella and that's okay, but when they started forcing me to move to google+ if I wanted to continue using those services, they went to far.

    It is not one thing Google is doing that bothers me, it is many things they are doing. I hate Apple because of their aggressive and slavery style marketing model. I went with Android because I felt that Google was not that way. I now see that they are moving that way and and I don't like it.
     
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  20. funkylogik

    funkylogik share the love peeps ;)
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    I do understand why you think that man but theres absolutely nothing forcing you to do the things that youre worrying about.
    Have a good read over the early replies you got.
    Abandoning google altogether is a bit extreme. Look at the amazing services they provide.
    Im still in complete awe of Google Earth after (how many) years :)
    I like google to know my (anonymous to everyone except me) data because then things are targeted towards my needs and interests. (If i have to see an ad', id rather it was for something im interested in than "sexy young teens ready to meet in your area" etc).
    We're getting a great service from google i think and it isnt free, we pay for it with our anonymous data and to me thats a good deal.
    Without me ruining another thread by making it political lol, what is it that youre directly worried about by using google services and them building a profile on "you" (your google ID) (worst case scenario)?
    Cheers :beer:
     
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  21. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    The Amazonians I am talking about have no form of electronics what so ever. Google just added their names to my contacts. I am not talking about one person here. It is like dozens of native amazonians, some of which I have not talked to for decades. One of the names was an Amazonian that died in 1995. This is very spooky and goes way beyond just information gathering for advertising purposes. The scariest thing is that the account is not even in my real name. It is a fake persona I created years ago for signing up for different places on the web. I only use my real information for banks and important sites that require it. My real name is no where to be found on the gmail account. What this means is that google has triangulated my real identity from the activity on the account and has built a profile for my real self. Unlike most people, I don't use google for everything, I just use gmail for a junk mail (I have my own domain name and paid email service for friends and family). The only other google service I used was Picasas web albums for sharing non-personal pictures on forums and stuff, but since google forced the transition to Google+ (which I hate) I stopped even that. I use Chorme a lot for web searching, but I switched to Firefox today. I stopped using the android browser a long time ago because it kept crashing my phone. I use Firefox for android ( it is much better).

    I just have no idea how google got the info on all these people that I know and added them to my google profile. If they have this much detailed personal info on me who does not use their plethera of services, how much info do you think they have accumulated on someone who does use all their services?
     
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  22. funkylogik

    funkylogik share the love peeps ;)
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    I dont understand tbh. These tribesmen, what actual info does google have on them? Where does that info exist? (Is it public or only you can see it after logging in)
     
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  23. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    I agree with you that some of the services that Google offers are awesome. But it does not give them the right to invade your privacy and assume they have the right to know everything about you, just because you use their service. I guess I have had the privilege of seeing what can happen to seeming innocent data in the wrong hands. The fact is that google is keeping everything you transmit through their service and will hand it over to advertisers and most importantly, the government. I have lived in countries and have faced prison for just voicing an opinion that was different from the governments. I have seen friends and family interrogated and tortured just because the government found out they were associated with someone that they were investigating for political disagreements. These are the realities of the world we live in. You life can be utterly destroyed over a single sentence that the authorities interpret to be offensive to them. Take for example, Voula Papachristou, an Olympic athlete that was banned for life from the Olimpics for a single tweet that the olimpic panel interpreted as racist. All she said was that with some many African immigrants to Greece the west Nile mosquitoes will have some native food to feed on." While some could interpret this as mildly racist, it is obviously aimed at voice concerns over excessive immigration. But for that one statement, (for which she immediately apologized), this woman's whole Olympic career was totally destroyed. How many things that other could interpret wrongly have you said over the years that google has kept a record of that might destroy your life, like that one statement did Voula Papachristou's? Humm? And what if the United States of America becomes controlled by a dictatorial regime that views a difference of political ideology as a crime against the state, as it now is in many countries around the world? Do you think there might be some info that you might not want Google to share with them about you? Food for thought.
     
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  24. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    The only info google has is their names. Some of these names are extremely difficult to spell and I can tell from their spelling that Google has extracted them from my own writings, although I am not sure where. After I saw them in my contacts on my phone (after syncing), I went searching and found them in my Google Dashboard under Contacts in the Other category.
     
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  25. funkylogik

    funkylogik share the love peeps ;)
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    Cool. Trust me mate im not a na
     
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