Info Collected by Windows Update

Posted on January 8, 2009 by Daniel Petri in Windows Client OS with

Information collected by Windows Update

Does Windows Update collect personal information from your computer?

Go to Windows Update, click on About Windows Update in the left side bar, and then scroll down to Windows Update Privacy Statement.

From the Windows Update Privacy Statement:

  • Windows Update is committed to protecting your privacy. To provide you with the appropriate list of updates, Windows Update must collect a certain amount of configuration information from your computer. This information includes:
  • Operating-system version number and Product Identification number
  • Internet Explorer version number
  • Version numbers of other software
  • Plug and Play ID numbers of hardware devices
  • The Product Identification number is collected to confirm that you are running a validly licensed copy of Windows. A validly licensed copy of Windows ensures that you will receive on-going updates from Windows Update. Windows Update does not collect your name, address, e-mail address, or any other form of personally identifiable information. The configuration information collected is used only for the period of time that you are visiting the site, and is not saved.
  • To provide you with the best possible service, Windows Update also tracks and records how many unique machines visit its site and whether the download and installation of specific updates succeeded or failed. In order to do this, Windows generates a Globally Unique Identifier (GUID) that is stored on your computer to uniquely identify it. Windows Update records the GUID of the computer that attempted the download, the ID of the item that you attempted to download and install, and information about your operating system version and Internet Explorer version.
  • Because Windows Update does not collect personally identifiable information, the configuration information and GUID cannot be used to identify you.
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at 2 p.m. EST