How to Find Google Pay's Hidden Privacy Settings

By Jennings Brown on at

Google Pay is an online paying system and digital wallet that makes it easy to buy anything on your mobile device or with your mobile device. But if you’re concerned about what Google is doing with all your data (which you probably should be), Google Pay has some secret settings to manage your settings.

A report from Bleeping Computer shows that privacy settings aren’t available through the main Google Pay setting page that is accessible through the navigation sidebar.

The URL for that settings page is:

https://pay.google.com/payments/u/0/home#settings

On that page, users can change general settings like address and payment users.

But if users want to change privacy settings, they have to go to a separate page:

https://pay.google.com/payments/u/0/home?page=privacySettings#privacySettings

On that screen, users can adjust all the same settings available on the other settings page, but they can also address three additional privacy settings—controlling whether Google Pay is allowed to share account information, personal information, and creditworthiness.

Here’s the full language of those three options:

-Allow Google Payment Corporation to share third party creditworthiness information about you with other companies owned and controlled by Google LLC for their everyday business purposes.

-Allow your personal information to be used by other companies owned and controlled by Google LLC to market to you. Opting out here does not impact whether other companies owned and controlled by Google LLC can market to you based on information you provide to them outside of Google Payment Corporation.

-Allow Google LLC or its affiliates to inform a third party merchant, whose site or app you visit, whether you have a Google Payments account that can be used for payment to that merchant. Opting out may impact your ability to use Google Payments to transact with certain third party merchants.

According to Bleeping Computer, the default of Google Pay is to enable all the above settings. In order to opt out, users have to go to the special URL that is not accessible through the navigation bar.

As the Reddit post that inspired the Bleeping Computer report claims, this discrepancy makes it appear that Google Pay is hiding its privacy options. “Google is not walking the talk when it claims to make it easy for their users to control the privacy and use of their own data,” the Redditor surmised.

A Google spokesperson told Gizmodo they’re working to make the privacy settings more accessible. “The different settings views described here are an issue resulting from a previous software update and we are working to fix this right away so that these privacy settings are always visible on pay.google.com,” the spokesperson told Gizmodo. “All users are currently able to access these privacy settings via the ‘Google Payments privacy settings page’ link in the Google Pay privacy notice.”

In the meantime, here’s that link again for the privacy settings. Go ahead and untick those three boxes, if you feel so inclined.

Featured image: Getty