While Windows 8's big problem was the new user interface, privacy concerns are one of the aspects preventing some people from upgrading or feeling comfortable with Microsoft's free Windows 10 update. The software giant has been slow to address these concerns but now Terry Myerson, executive VP of Windows and Devices, has written a blog to clarify how Windows 10 handles your privacy.
Myerson explains Windows 10 collects data for safety and reliability reasons, and claims Windows 10 nor any other Microsoft software will collect data for advertising purposes.
We collect a limited amount of information to help us provide a secure and reliable experience. This includes data like an anonymous device ID, device type, and application crash data which Microsoft and our developer partners use to continuously improve application reliability. This doesn’t include any of your content or files, and we take several steps to avoid collecting any information that directly identifies you, such as your name, email address or account ID.
A great example of how this data was used effectively was just last month, when aggregate data showed us that a particular version of a graphics driver was crashing on some Windows 10 PCs, which then caused a reboot. This driver was not widely used, but still the issue was impacting customers. We immediately contacted the partner who builds the driver and worked with them to turn around a fix to Windows Insiders within 24 hours. We used the data on Insiders’ devices to confirm that the problem was resolved, and then rolled out the fix to the broad public via an update the next day – all-in-all, this data helped us find, fix and resolve a significant problem within 48 hours.
Our enterprise feature updates later this year will enable enterprise customers the option to disable this telemetry, but we strongly recommend against this.