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Google Assistant is always listening: How to delete your Assistant recordings

Google Assistant is always listening, just like Alexa and Siri. They are always waiting for their trigger word, allowing them to respond to your commands. 

Always listening is different from always recording, but anything you say after “Hey Google” or “OK Google” is recorded and saved by Google. The entire catalogue of what you’ve ever asked Google Assistant can be found in your Google account.

Don’t worry though, you can delete them. Here’s how.

Why does Google save recordings?

Like Alexa, Google saves recordings to improve accuracy of results and improve your experience anywhere you use your Google account.

According to Google: “What you search, read and watch can work together to help you get things done faster, discover new content and pick up where you left off”.

Deleting recordings will presumably mean Google Assistant has less information to use at its disposal to give you the right answer for you or respond how you might want it to. While Google Assistant is always listening, it records only after you say the wake words.

How to delete your voice data from Google

Thankfully, as with Alexa, it’s easy to find and delete the voice recordings Google has obtained if you don’t want Google hanging on to them.

There are various ways to do it though because Google Assistant is available across a variety of platforms from phones to the Home Hub, now called Nest Hub.

Here’s how to find and delete voice data manually on Google Home app:

  1. Open the Google Home app. Tap on the My Account tab in the bottom right corner with the person in the circle.
  2. Tap on the My Activity tab.
  3. Scroll down to see all the recorded voice recordings.
  4. Tap on the three dots on the right of the day or specific recording.
  5. Press delete.

Here’s how to find and delete voice data automatically on Google Home app:

  1. Open the Google Home app. Tap on the My Account tab in the bottom right corner with the person in the circle.
  2. Tap on the My Activity tab.
  3. Scroll down to “Choose to delete automatically”
  4. Select from the options: Keep until I delete manually, Keep for 18 months then delete automatically, Keep for three months then delete automatically”.
  5. Press Next.

How to find and delete voice data on your Google account:

  1. Open your Google account.
  2. Tap on the Data and Personalisation tab. 
  3. Scroll down to Activity controls.
  4. Click on Voice and Audio Activity.
  5. Manage Activity. 
  6. Tap on the three dots on the right of a day or specific recording.
  7. Press delete.

These options only allow you to delete specific recordings however. If you want to delete al voice recordings, or all recordings between a certain time frame, here’s how:

  1. Open your Google account.
  2. Tap on the Data and Personalisation tab. 
  3. Scroll down to Activity controls.
  4. Click on Voice and Audio Activity.
  5. Manage Activity. 
  6. Click on the three dots on the right of the Search Voice and Audio bar at the top of the page.
  7. Tap on Delete Activity by.
  8. Select All Time from the Delete by Date scroll down menu.
  9. Select Delete.

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