Why Use or Don’t Use Google Sync

There are many reasons why Google Chrome is the most popular browser. One of the main reasons is the fact that it is multi-platform, which comes in really handy when you are someone that moves between operating systems. As long as you have a Google account, you can switch seamlessly from one device to another and have information like your bookmarks and passwords readily available. This is all possible due to one simple feature the Chrome browser has – Chrome Sync.

Why using Google Chrome Sync Features

Google Chrome sync is a feature of the Chrome browser that allows you to have all your Chrome information updated across all your devices. This means that wherever you are using Chrome – be it your phone, Chromebook, Mac, or PC – you can have all the below available and updated as long as you’re signed in to your Google account:

  • Bookmarks
  • History and open tabs
  • Passwords
  • Payment info
  • Addresses and phone numbers
  • Settings and preferences

Additionally, Chrome sync is what signs you in automatically to Gmail, YouTube, Search, and other Google services without having to do it individually. Login once and browse away!

Why not using Google Chrome Sync Features

Sharing with strangers

Google Chrome Sync is a great feature but dangerous. Synchronized data can include browser history, bookmarks, passwords, cookies, and other information that users consider private and typically have no intention of sharing with anyone else. Password, cookie and payment card secrecy is also important for security. Browser synchronization increases the risk of you inadvertently sharing that information with other users of the computers you sync between.

It’s important to consider whether you are truly the only user of a system that is set to synchronize. Imagine what can happen if your kids are playing with your home laptop and it synchronizes to your work system.

You should also consider the risk of your device being lost or stolen but continuing to sync your information to the thief (as if there wasn’t enough stress involved in losing a device. Another thing to consider before synchronizing is that having a universal ID for all your systems can lead a hacker from one of your systems to all of them!

Cloud privacy issues

Another reason why some people dislike the idea of synchronizing browsers is because the synchronized data isn’t just shared between devices, it’s also stored in the cloud, under the control of the browser vendor.

Not all browsers are the same here. The popular Firefox browser encrypts your data locally—with a cryptographically secure, randomly generated key—before storing it in the cloud, so it can’t read your information. Chrome users who want similar protection must set a passphrase.

People who just don’t like that idea of sharing their information with browser vendors, even if it’s encrypted, can use specialized software that promises to synchronize your browser data in a more secure way.

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