How to Delete Cortana Recordings and Protect Your Privacy in 9 Simple Steps

In this post, I’m going to show you exactly how to delete Cortana recordings and protect your privacy in 9 very simple steps.

Though the application is useful in helping Windows 10 users to schedule appointments via their system’s calendar, set reminders, send out emails and lots more, it has also been proven to be a threat to one’s privacy.

And today, you’re going to learn how to stop Cortana from intervening with your privacy in these few steps;

Let’s get started!

What is Cortana?

According to Wikipedia, Cortana is a virtual assistant that was developed by Microsoft which uses the Bing search engine to carry out tasks such as answering users’ questions, setting reminders etc.

Cortana is available in the following languages;

  • English
  • French
  • German
  • Portuguese
  • Italian
  • Chinese
  • Spanish
  • Japanese

As Cortana is useful in getting tasks done on your computer while your hands are busy, but you need to be aware of snooping of your privacy.

Before you can delete Cortana recording and protect your privacy, you need to open your windows computer and sign in to the same Microsoft account you have been using to chat with Cortana. Once that’s done, follow the steps below.

How to Delete Cortana Recordings and Protect Your Privacy

Step #1: On the search bar which is next to the start button, type Settings. The Settings application will be displayed, click on it. Alternatively, you can click on the Start button and then scroll down to the Settings icon. An amazing shortcut you can use is by pressing Win + I to go directly to Settings.

Step #2: Click on Accounts located at the bottom-left corner.

Step #3: Under your username, click on the Manage my Microsoft account. The Microsoft website will open. Sign in to your Microsoft account.


Step #4: At the left side of the menu located at the top of the page, click on Privacy.


Step #5: You will be asked to reenter your Microsoft login credential – do it. If you set up two-factor authentication, you will have to verify your identity.


Step #6: You will be taken back to the Privacy section of Microsoft’s website. In the menu under the banner, click on the My activity.


Step #7: Click and open the menu that says Filter by data type which appears on the left side of the screen. The section option is Voice, click on it.


Step #8: Displayed at the centre of the screen is a list of Cortana recordings associated with your Microsoft account. You can listen to every recording individually by clicking on the Play button.

Step #9: Select Clear activity located at the top right of the list to remove all of your recordings. To remove recordings individually, click on the Clear link located at the bottom of each item (this is close to the View details.

Note that this won’t stop Cortana from sending your voice recordings to Microsoft. To stop Cortana from sending your voice recordings to Microsoft, you have to deactivate the online speech recognition.

How to Turn Off Cortana and Deactivate Cortana from Recording Your Voice

Step #1: Go back to Settings.

Step #2: Scroll down to Cortana which is located in the right-hand column.


Step #3: In the menu by the left side, click on Permissions & History.


Step #4: Click on Manage the information Cortana can access from this device. Use your mouse and scroll down and select Speech Privacy Settings.


Step #5: Toggle off the Online speech recognition


As you toggle off online speech recognition, Cortana will use a less accurate option that has limited functionality than its cloud-based recognition engine. It will use the device-based speech recognition engine. Microsoft will not transcribe or acquire your voice commands or conversations.

Wow, we have come to an end to a comprehensive guide on how to delete Cortana recordings and protect your privacy. If there is any question regarding this guide, you are free to share them with us via the comment section below.

Also, do you think voice assistants are credible and how often do you use them?

Let me know by leaving a comment below!

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