What kinds of data can I choose to contribute to Microsoft?

Microsoft uses customer data that’s contributed by people like you to improve our products and services and keep them running smoothly, to provide you with personalized experiences, and to help keep you safe. Here are some of the most common categories of data we collect:

Web browsing and online searches

To speed up web browsing, we collect and use browsing history to predict where you want to go. To learn more, see Browsing data and privacy.

Read about Microsoft Edge in the Privacy Statement

Like many search engines, we use your Bing search history, and the history aggregated from other people, to give you better search results.

Read about Bing search in the Privacy Statement

To view and delete the search history or browsing history that’s associated with your Microsoft account, visit the privacy dashboard.

Girl in Kitchen using Surface Go 3 with Edge
Downtown city street view from high angle inside office building

Places you go

Location information helps us give you directions to the places you want to go and show you info relevant to where you are. For this, we use the locations you provide or that we’ve detected using technologies like GPS or IP addresses.

Detecting location also helps us protect you. For example, if you almost always sign in from Tokyo, and suddenly you’re signing in from London, we can check to make sure it’s really you.

You can turn location services on or off for your device, choose which apps have access to your location, and manage the location data stored on your device. To learn more, see Windows location service and your privacy.

Read about location in the Privacy Statement

To view and delete the location activity that’s associated with your Microsoft account, visit the privacy dashboard.

Data that helps us assist you

You can use Cortana to help manage your calendar, keep your schedule up to date, join meetings, find facts and files, and just make things easier. To provide you with personalized experiences, Cortana learns from certain data about you, such as info from your searches, calendar, contacts, and location. To learn more, including how to manage your data, see Cortana and your privacy.

Read about Cortana in the Privacy Statement

Students collaborating on group project using Cortana search
Female and male employees standing on home furnishings sales floor in commercial retail store

Data we use to show more interesting ads

Some Microsoft services are supported by advertising. To show ads you’re more likely to be interested in, we use data like your location, Bing web searches, Microsoft or advertiser webpages you view, demographics, and things you’ve favorited. We don’t target ads to you by using what you say in email, chat, video calls, or voice mail, or in your documents or other personal files.

You can change your ad settings to stop Microsoft from showing you ads based on your interests. You’ll still see ads, but they may not be as interesting to you.

Read about advertising in the Privacy Statement

To change your ad settings, visit the privacy dashboard.

To choose whether you want to receive promotional emails and newsletters from Microsoft, change your communications settings.

and payment data

We store your Microsoft account sign-in info and your payment instrument info if you choose to associate one with your Microsoft account. We do this to make it easier for you to sign in and pay for apps, games, or media.

To update passwords, security info, and payment options, find info on how to keep your account secure, and to view your recent sign-in activity, visit the Microsoft account website.

Read about Microsoft accounts in the Privacy Statement

Customer using a mobile device to make a secure coffee shop purchase

Where can I find privacy settings in Microsoft products and services?

You’ll find links to instructions that will help you locate your privacy settings in individual Microsoft products and services in the following sections. To view and clear the data that Microsoft saves to the cloud for the Microsoft products and services you use, visit the privacy dashboard.


To manage privacy settings on your Windows 11 device, go to Start > Settings > Privacy & security, or on your Windows 10 device, go to Start > Settings > Privacy. To learn about managing privacy settings in Windows, visit the Privacy in Windows support page.

Microsoft Edge

To learn about InPrivate browsing, how to view and delete your browsing history, and other ways to protect your privacy in Microsoft Edge, visit the Privacy in Microsoft Edge support page.


To learn about how to control who can view your files on OneDrive, read these best practices for keeping your files secure.


Learn about how to control who can see your Skype profile, safety measures for kids, and other ways to protect your privacy by visiting the Skype support page.

Microsoft Rewards

To see your account info and to learn how to opt out of Microsoft Rewards and redeem your credits, visit the Microsoft Rewards Settings page.


To manage privacy settings in any Office app, go to File > Account, and then under Account Privacy, select Manage Settings. To learn about privacy in Office, visit the Privacy in Office support page.


Adjust your Xbox privacy settings on your console or on the Xbox privacy and online safety page. To learn about Xbox privacy, visit the Xbox Support page.


Sign in to Bing.com to turn off Search Suggestions and adjust other Bing privacy settings.


To find info about managing LinkedIn privacy settings, as well as FAQs and the LinkedIn Privacy Policy, visit the LinkedIn Privacy Hub.


To learn about how MileIQ works, the kinds of mileage tracking data that’s collected, where it’s stored, and how to delete it, see the MileIQ Privacy Statement.


For info about the kinds of data that SwiftKey collects, removing your data and account, unsubscribing from product emails, and more, see Privacy questions and your data.

Contact the privacy team

If you're not able to find what you’re looking for, or you have a privacy question or concern—contact our privacy team.

Enterprise and business customers

For enterprise and business customers, IT admins, or anyone using Microsoft products at work, check out the Microsoft Trust Center to get information about privacy and security in our products and services.