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Google Allo Keeps Messages Indefinitely, Raising Privacy Concerns

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Google Allo Keeps Messages Indefinitely, Raising Privacy Concerns

Following the launch of Google Allo, it was learned this week that the company’s smart messaging app may be a cause for concern when it comes to privacy.

Allo, an app which Google claims has privacy in mind, keeps all messages indefinitely until they are manually deleted. While that may not matter to some, there are others who aren’t comfortable with their correspondence being saved forever.

The reported reason behind Google’s decision to have Allo store messages permanently has to do with the Smart Reply function. It is thought that the technology will work better if it has a longer backlog of conversation history to draw from.

Allo’s approach to storing messages actually sets it apart from its competitors. While other messaging apps have privacy functions turned on by default, Allo is instead trasparent about the fact that it’s storing your messages from day one.

Users will have full control over how long the data stays on Google servers, with the option to delete entire conversations or just single messages. As another option, people can use Incognito Mode, which offers end-to-end encryption.

Over time we’ll see if the trade off of privacy is worth having Smart Reply being able to accurately predict what you’re going to say next.

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Matt Southern

Lead News Writer at Search Engine Journal

Matt Southern has been the lead news writer at Search Engine Journal since 2013. With a degree in communications, Matt ... [Read full bio]

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