Google knows every Wi-Fi password entered from an Android device

Here's a disturbing story; a published report says that Google keeps a log of every Wi-Fi password ever entered into an Android device. According to the story, the list is not for human consumption which still doesn't take away from the idea that your Wi-Fi password is sitting inside a file at Mountain View. Android phones since Android 2.2 have sent back to Google the Wi-Fi password as a default setting on the handset...
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116 Comments

13. Ninetysix

Posts: 2933; Member since: Oct 08, 2012

It's not Apple doing it so it's naturally "acceptable" to the hemodroids. Next android device that adds a finger print scanner will also be "acceptable" and no mention of NSA, etc. So easy to read the pattern :)

17. Berzerk000

Posts: 4275; Member since: Jun 26, 2011

Eh. I couldn't care less. Oh wow, Google has the password to my WiFi, they're going to... Use my internet? "Did you ever buy a new Android phone, enter your Google account information, and the new phone instantly hooked up with your router? Google can decrypt the stored Wi-Fi passwords with just a Gmail username and password." Good. Less work for me. The password for my WiFi network is actually quite long and a pain to enter into a new phone. I wouldn't mind if Apple did it, I wouldn't mind if Microsoft did it either. In my opinion, news journalists are blowing these "privacy invasions" out of proportion. So what Google keeps your WiFi passwords. So what if Apple keeps your conversations with Siri for 2 years. I don't care, because these are some very large and reputable companies who keep this information in a digital vault. Not only that, but you can actually look and see the permissions all of the features on your device has, so it's not like this is a big secret.

29. MartyK

Posts: 1043; Member since: Apr 11, 2012

I'm with you, hell I have so many passwords, glad it do save my password.

25. Googler

Posts: 813; Member since: Jun 10, 2013

Like how it was acceptable when Apple was keeping track of all iPhone users locations? It's 2013 and things like this have become common, get over it.

28. dsDoan

Posts: 235; Member since: Dec 28, 2011

There have already been Android devices with fingerprint scanners, and no one cared.

14. JunitoNH

Posts: 1946; Member since: Feb 15, 2012

Is an Android world, what were you expecting.

15. cookies

Posts: 3; Member since: Mar 25, 2013

As someone who flashes and switches from ROM to ROM, not having to re-enter each and every WiFi password again is pretty convenient. But this is just the convenient aspect. If Google getting a hold of your data and knowing what you're doing is what this article is about don't make me remind you that every single bookmark that you've had is probably synced, every search entry be it porn or cough remedies, even every one of your contacts is synced to Google for convenience. The point is, clicking that "back up my data" option should've made you agreeable and have kept you informed of the syncing, even more so for the editor of phonearena

16. Sniggly

Posts: 7305; Member since: Dec 05, 2009

I'm sure that iFanboys will act like this is the most evil thing ever done by a company. However, I just don't see why I need to be scared. What is Google actually able to do with this information which would be to my detriment? It seems they included the feature for the users' convenience, not for any nefarious purpose. Come on, Alan F., instead of acting like we should intrinsically be frightened of this information, why don't you set down your paranoia tea and actually think through what the problem actually is. FYI, this is strike two. (fingerprint scanner article being the first). After strike three, I will never take you seriously as an author again.

18. Berzerk000

Posts: 4275; Member since: Jun 26, 2011

If Google were trying to be evil with this, they wouldn't show that it can do this on the very surface in the settings (one tap and you're there) and give you a chance to opt out of it. I remember there being a similar article on PA like this before. I can't remember it exactly, but it was an article telling about an app that shows you the permissions of every app you have installed, and the author went on to say how surprised you should be that communication apps like Whatsapp or Facebook messenger can read/write to your contacts (which is common sense in my opinion). My argument was that before you even install the app it asks for your permission to do those things, and if the user didn't read them that was their own fault. I'm not sure if that author was Alan F., but from the way he's talking here, I wouldn't be surprised.

22. MorePhonesThanNeeded

Posts: 645; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

Lol, you're giving him a rope, he already ran out of rope with me a long time ago. Biased reporting and always a few shades lighter for anything Apple related. Not sure why anyone who chooses back up my data wouldn't think that didn't include every bit of secure information on your device? What did Alan f. actually a back up was? Also this is VOLUNTARY, you do not have to back up a damn thing so all your data is stored on your phone and in your brain. Problem solved.

85. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

Honestly, Alan's writing has gotten worse over the course of a few months. He used to be a decent writer, but has shown bias and over blows something to the extreme. I take most users on this site more seriously than I do with Alan. He's become a joke to me to a couple of months now. (Patiently waiting for a warning in my Gmail inbox.)

20. dsDoan

Posts: 235; Member since: Dec 28, 2011

"Google can decrypt the stored Wi-Fi passwords with just a Gmail username and password." Of course they can. Anyone with your Google account and password can decrypt any information in your Google account; that is exactly what entering your password does: it decrypts your information so you may access it.

21. THE.DARK.KNIGHT

Posts: 269; Member since: Sep 09, 2013

Wow. Just wow. Am amazed at the Bias in these android fans. Google can be trusted but apple is NSAs brother. I own an android and when I format my phone and then set it up again by entering my gmail username and password my contacts are automatically restored over wifi. What makes you guys think that google doesn't have your address book contacts and numbers? Atleast apples services encrypt your stored data. The real NSA spy is google now. The way it has access to everything you're doing is just scary. It scan your gmail for air tickets. It knows what time you leave for certain places. It keeps tracking you.

26. Sniggly

Posts: 7305; Member since: Dec 05, 2009

Actually, I've found the NSA/Apple jokes silly as well. Nice strawman though.

27. MorePhonesThanNeeded

Posts: 645; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

Wait what? Your stuff is automatically restored over WiFi? How on earth did your phone do such a thing after a factory reset? 1. you would have had to given your permission for the back up to google's servers. 2. Nothing is automatic, as you would have to actually sign back in using your google account and password since the odds of Google magically knowing that is you on that very phone is next to IMPOSSIBLE! What do you know about spies? Please the garbage at the front door, there's more than enough trash in here as it is. Everything on your Google device is optional, you can opt to not use anything...don't go talking as if they are forcing you to use any of it.

54. THE.DARK.KNIGHT

Posts: 269; Member since: Sep 09, 2013

So you're telling me that I either back up my data and share it with google or I lose my data every time I install a new custom rom? That's why I use my iPhone 5 more. No lags and a seamless iCloud service that guarantees the encryption of my data on apples servers. FYI- I have a Galaxy S3

64. protozeloz

Posts: 5396; Member since: Sep 16, 2010

Eh, how sure are you about that?

92. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

What's so different about using iCloud, then using any other backup service (cloud). This is just one piece of data Apple doesnt back up, and again...users can opt out. This is what they mean by making a mountain out of a mole hill.

23. sprockkets

Posts: 1612; Member since: Jan 16, 2012

FYI Windows 8 does this as well. This is very old news.

24. digicon

Posts: 121; Member since: Aug 11, 2011

If Google saves every Wi-Fi password, from across the Nation(World), what good are passwords ? . .

35. digicon

Posts: 121; Member since: Aug 11, 2011

You people still don't get it. They have recorded EVERY password to private Wi-Fi's. It has nothing to do with you, or your settings . . .

40. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

Are you arguing with yourself?

46. darkkjedii

Posts: 30833; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Lol...

111. digicon

Posts: 121; Member since: Aug 11, 2011

Naw . Just sayin' . . .

30. kabhijeet.16

Posts: 884; Member since: Dec 05, 2012

The feature is know to everyone. Backup my data already has "Backup app data, Wi-Fi passwords and other settings to Google servers." It has been already declared. If you feel insecure opt out of it. The feature is for convenience only(atleast for me coz I've forget my WiFi password.). Plus are u bothered about Wi-Fi passwords or you should be more bothered about credit card information and Google/Facebook/Twitter passwords. These companies like Google & Apple &MS keep some amount of data. If u try to imagine this huge amount of data is of no threat coz nobody is going to read them. The only purpose thedata is used is for developing new technology like artificial intelligence, more capable smart learning OS, language & behavioral pattern which is used in developing apps related to language translation & better search results.

32. ScelesticSteve

Posts: 26; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

Well, I have an iPhone and not a major Android fan. I'm pretty sure all mobile OS platforms do this anymore. It's all about tracking and storing user information.

37. weedl

Posts: 50; Member since: Oct 05, 2012

NSA....-_-

38. yazbuh

Posts: 29; Member since: Jun 21, 2012

Scroogled....

41. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

Newsflash in case you've been living under a rock since 2010: ALL companies do this. Stop trying to start a war and go outside.

47. darkkjedii

Posts: 30833; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Smurf while I agree with you, you gotta admit, if this story was about apple the android fanboys would be all over it. Since its google they'll make excuses, and dismiss it.
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