3 Simple Steps to Secure Trading Information on Google

Every so often, I survey my customers to find out their biggest concerns related to trading and trading computers. Every time, they say one of their top concerns is staying safe and secure on the internet. So in this post, I want to share some ways Google helps you to stay safe. I find that most traders use at least several of Google’s services. You probably don’t think of it this way, but if you use Google Search, Google Calendar, Gmail, or Google Docs, you are using Google services. In particular, if you are using Google Docs or Google Drive to share or store trading information, you should read the Google Privacy Policy. This information is important for your business. Google updates the policy regularly. It recently completed a significant revision to reflect the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). GDPR is the European Union’s new data protection and privacy rulebook. It went into effect in May 2018. An understanding of Google’s privacy policy will help you figure out what settings are appropriate for you personally. This is particularly important if you use Google Drive to sync data from your trading computers.

Start with These Checkups

Google explains their approach to keeping you safe on safety.google. To look at your specific security dashboard, from safety.google click on ‘Google Account’. Or, go straight to myaccount.google.com. From the dashboard, you’ll want to periodically perform these three important tasks:
  • Run Security Checkup
  • Run Privacy Checkup
  • Check My Activity
Let’s dive into the various aspects of these tasks.

Sign-in & Security

Within the Sign-in & security group, you’ll want to run the security checkup and consider setting up 2-step verification. The Security Checkup runs checks on all your devices and apps. The information is gathered and summarized into 4 categories. Check each one and take appropriate action.
  • Third-party access: See which apps can access information in your Google accounts. Remove access for apps you no longer use or need.
  • Your devices: Check for suspicious logins or unverified access. If you don’t recognize a device, best practice is to change your Google password.
  • Recent security events: Check security-related activity from the last four weeks (e.g., password changes).
  • Sign-in & recovery: Set or confirm alternative ways Google can reach you or verify it’s really you signing in. These will help you get access to your account in case you forget your password.
In addition, you may want to turn on 2-step verification, especially if you are super worried about hackers discovering your password. Once this is on, hackers will not be able to gain access just by guessing your password. They will also need physical access to your devices. From the Sign-in & security box, click on Signing in to Google to turn 2-step verification on or off. 2-Step verification is a great security precaution against possible attacks. However, just be aware that it will cause launching of Google services to be more time-consuming.

Personal Info & Privacy

Privacy Checkup shows information about your custom setups. It gives you control over how and when Google saves or uses information in these areas:
  • Web & App Activity
  • Location History
  • Device Information
  • Voice & Audio Activity
  • YouTube Search History
  • YouTube Watch History
Within the privacy checkup window, you can use the privacy settings to control access and sharing. For example, you can tell Google to share on Twitter when you upload or like a video. And, you can optimize ad settings to make Google only show ads that are relevant to you. Also within the Personal Info & Privacy group, use My Activity to check how much time you are spending on various activities, such as researching stocks. It’s a much more in-depth look at your online behavior than you get from just looking at your search history in your browser. My Activity has a number of helpful added features, including these:
  • See activity across all devices
  • Filter by date and Google product
  • Delete by date or product
  • View, edit, and delete comments on YouTube Videos
  • Download activity information from individual apps. You can specify fairly granular data, such as your Reading List or list of Contacts.
This more-powerful historical search functionality could be very helpful to you as a trader when looking for something you saw in the past but didn’t bookmark. It could also be handy if you’re working on a shared computer and don’t want others to see what you’ve been researching.

Conclusion

If you’re concerned about your online safety and the security of your trading activities, you’ll definitely want to mark your calendar for periodic reviews of all the security settings and information Google provides. It’s a good way to ‘manage by prevention’ and protect your trading business.
There are more trading computer tips like this in our buyer’s guide. Check out our “How To Buy a Trading Computer” e-book.
Remember, we are here to help with all your technology-related questions. If you think of additional questions about computer hardware or other questions, give me a call. My team and I are here to help. We’re happy to answer any of your questions about trading computers via phone: 800-387-5250 Photo by tlparadis on pixabay.