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Keep a tight rein over Windows 10 Update

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in Centerpiece,Office software,Office Technology

Windows 10When installing the Windows 10 Anniversary Update, learn how to navigate the configuration screens that establish your system preferences.

For example, the blue “Get going fast” screen discloses all the information Microsoft is authorized to learn about you, should you click the “Use Express Settings” button, explains J.D. Biersdorfer at The New York Times. You might be rushing and ignore the fine print, assuming it’s the best choice yet unaware of all the terms you have agreed to.

Microsoft designed many of the settings to make it much easier to use Windows 10. However, those Express Settings are also driven to collect data about how you interact with Windows for adding information through voice, typing or stylus — which the company says is to “improve the suggestion and recognition platforms.”

So if you opt for the supposed convenience of those Express Settings, understand that there’s a catch. Aside from allowing Microsoft to collect a lot of your personal information, they also allow Windows and its apps to request your location data, see your location history, target you with personalized advertising, share your browsing data and let Skype calling software use your contacts list, Biersdorfer says. “Automatically connect to suggested open hot spots” is another setting you get if you go Express, despite the next sentence, which notes, “Not all networks are secure.”

With all of this in mind, don’t let the installation process run on autopilot. Take time to better understand the options, and learn to control your privacy settings.

Even if you clicked the Express Settings button — instead of the smaller Customize Settings link in the lower left corner of the “Get going fast” screen — you can go back into the main Windows 10 Settings app from the Start Menu and change things. The Settings page will bring up two user-friendly pages of on/off options.

Microsoft’s site has a collection of articles about Windows 10 and privacy at support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/12456, including explanations and a how-to guide for adjusting individual settings. Ensure that your system is set up just the way you intended.

— Adapted from “Taking the Windows 10 Express,” J.D. Biersdorfer, The New York Times.

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