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Microsoft shares more info about privacy controls in the new 'Recall' feature in Windows 11

Microsoft officially unveiled the "Recall" feature at its special event on May 20, 2024. The company pitched it as a new experience with "photographic" memory, capable of remembering literally everything you do on your computer so that you can go back to any app or file whenever you like it. Naturally, that sounds very fishy to some users, so Microsoft published a new support page with a detailed explanation of available privacy controls.

The new Recall experience in Windows 11

Microsoft says right off the bat that all the processing and snapshot storing happens on-device only. Windows 11 should not send any of that data to Microsoft or third parties. That also means you can use Recall without an internet connection. In addition, Windows 11 encrypts snapshots so that nobody can access your activities. Finally, users can pause or turn off the experience, filter apps, and delete taken snapshots at any time.

Windows 11 will notify you about Recall during the initial setup experience and offer you the option to customize some of its parts. Once turned on, Recall will place an icon in the tray area to notify you that the operating system is taking snapshots of what is going on. Clicking the icon will let you pause snapshots, open Racall, or go to Settings.

The new Recall experience in Windows 11

Speaking of settings, Recall options will sit under Privacy & Security > Recall & Snapshots. Available customization includes the ability to tweak how much space Windows reserves for snapshots, filtered apps, filtered websites, and more. Note, however, that website filters will only work in Microsoft Edge and other Chromium-based browsers.

You can learn more about privacy measures Microsoft uses in the new Recall experience in a document on the official support page. The first Copilot+ PCs with Recall and other AI-based experiences will start shipping in June 2024 (some features will arrive later).

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