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Stalk Google, but don’t let it

Google has made it a lot easier for you to access the data it has on you

By Surit Doss in Calcutta

  • Published 30.09.19, 12:58 AM
  • Updated 30.09.19, 12:58 AM

I am a little anxious about Google tracking me and keeping records of my activities on the Internet. Is there a way to get rid of all this data?

Aditya Kejriwal

Google has made it a lot easier for you to access the data it has on you. On your computer, navigate to https://myaccount.google.com. Sign in and click on Data & personalisation on the left. Click on Manage your activity controls. For Web & App Activity choose Manage Activity. Click on Choose to delete automatically. You can then opt to delete it manually, keep your data for 18 months or keep it for three months after which it will be automatically trashed.

To stop Google from keeping a record of the places you have visited, open the Google Maps app on your phone. Tap on the hamburger icon on the top left and go to Your Timeline. Open the three-dot menu on the top right and select Settings and Privacy. Scroll down to Automatically delete Location History. Tap on it and select the option that suits you.

Battery life

I recently replaced the battery of my 2012 MacBook Air. When I bought it while studying in the US, the Apple store asked me to always run it on battery to maximise battery life. However, the Apple service centre in Calcutta asked me to run it on the power adapter. What is the best practice?

Saikat Kundu

Apple does not recommend leaving your MacBook plugged in all the time. Lithium-based batteries need the electrons in them to be moving now and then and this can happen only if it is run on battery. Keep it plugged in whenever you want to but remember to use it on battery and charge it fully at least once a month.

A MacBook Air battery is designed to retain its full capacity for 1,000 charge and discharge cycles. After that, it functions at 80 per cent of its capacity. To check the cycle count of the battery, hold down the Option key and click the Apple icon in the upper-left corner and then choose System Report. Next, click on Power from the left panel and look for the Cycle Count under Health Information. A new battery will have a lower cycle count.

You can also check the condition of the battery by pressing the Option key on the keyboard and clicking on the battery icon at the top right. It will tell you whether the battery is functioning normally, needs replacing soon, or requires you to change the battery immediately.

Cool it

My Xiaomi Redmi Note 7 Pro gets heated if I use it continuously for 15 minutes. I updated the software recently. How do I fix it?

Nibedita Sarkar

Some models of the Redmi Note 7 Pro do overheat but this can be controlled. The main reason behind it is the processor or the battery working overtime. Gaming is great on this phone but it does heat up when you play games such as PUGB or watch a video for a long period.

To control the heat, close all apps that you are not using. Turn off WiFi and Bluetooth if not needed. Use good anti-virus software to ensure that no malware is keeping the processor and RAM busy. Use the app Cooling Master by CXZH Ltd to lower temperature of the phone. It will detect programs that are heating the phone and stop them. Also, get a junk cleaner such as AVG Cleaner to get rid of useless files and free up the processor and RAM. Often, restarting the phone gets rid of the overheating problem. Do that if the phone gets too warm.

Forgot password

I forgot my Facebook password, and do not have an email account associated with it. However, two-factor authentication is turned on for the account.

Kumaresh Malo

Since you have two-factor authentication turned on, your phone number is registered with Facebook. Click on Forgot Password and enter your phone number on the webpage that opens. Opt to receive the code to reset the password by SMS. Then, just follow the instructions on the screen. You could also navigate to https://m.facebook.com/login/identify and fill in your phone number here and Facebook will help you recover your account.

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