Microsoft is concerned about your privacy -- and wants you to be too

Your privacy is Microsoft’s priority. At least that’s what the software giant is saying. According to Ryan Gavin, General Manager, Windows, the company takes its responsibilities for protecting your privacy very seriously.

To prove this, Microsoft is launching a new consumer awareness campaign focused on online privacy. There’s a special information and tools page at www.Microsoft.com/YourPrivacy (which is so private it doesn’t currently exist), and an ad campaign to "kick start awareness and conversation".

You can also check how good you are at protecting your privacy by taking an online quiz at Your Privacy Type. This asks you questions such as where you access the internet from, which social networks you use and how often you check them, who you’re connected to, the sort of information you post, and so on. At the end you’ll be shown your privacy type (I’m "Moderate" apparently) and present tips for improving things.

As Ryan Gavin says:

Very few of us believe that sharing some personal data online is a bad thing. It’s part of our everyday routines to fill out profiles, login to sites, and oftentimes provide personal information like our credit card or phone numbers in order to take advantage of all the web has to offer. In fact, the more personal and relevant the web gets, the better it can get.

Yet, at some point, we all draw a line where we are uncomfortable sharing more. And when we think we’re being tracked, particularly by those we may not have a direct relationship with, our tolerance drops. And while tracking isn’t bad per se, we typically reach our information-sharing breaking point with very personal data, like items related to our kids or our health. That said, everyone is unique when it comes to what we feel comfortable sharing with whom.

Providing customers with the tools and technology that allow you to have more choice and control is something Microsoft has been doing for quite some time, and today’s products like Internet Explorer, Windows, Xbox, and Outlook.com make it easier to manage and control your privacy.

So what do you think of Microsoft’s new initiative?

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