Why You Should Blur Your Home on Google Maps and How to Do It
Street View is a great tool for finding your way, but it also comes with privacy risks.
Nelson Aguilar is an LA-based tech how-to writer and graduate of UCLA. With more than a decade of experience, he covers Apple and Google and writes on iPhone and Android features, privacy and security settings and more.
Street View is one of the coolest features of Google Maps. It uses recent street photos to let you virtually visit locations all over the world. Street View is great for checking out a restaurant or club before you go or for identifying a house or building you've never been to before.
Unfortunately, Street View is also a useful tool for stalkers and criminals. It basically gives anyone a free ticket to examine your home over the internet. Sure, someone could simply walk or drive by your home and do it in person, but Google Maps lets them do it easily from their couch. Anyone with a phone or computer can use it.
Fortunately, there's a simple way to blur your home on Google Maps and help prevent others from seeing too many details of where you live. Here's how to do it.
You'll need to do this on your computer, as the blurring feature isn't available in the Google Maps application on iOS or Android. While it is accessible through the web browser on your mobile device, it's rather difficult to use, so use a trusted web browser on your Mac or PC instead.
Watch this: How to Blur Your Home or an Object in Google Maps
At maps.google.com, enter your home address in the search bar at the top-right, hit return, then click the photo of your home that appears.
Next, you'll see the Street View of your location. Click Report a Problem at the bottom-right. The text is super tiny, but it's there.
Now, it's up to you to choose what you want Google to blur. Using your mouse, adjust the view of the image so that your home and anything else you want to blur is all contained within the red and black box. Use your cursor to move around and the plus and minus buttons to zoom in and out, respectively.
Once you're finished adjusting the image, choose what you're requesting to blur underneath:
Your car/license plate.
A different object.
You'll be asked to give a bit more detail as to what exactly you want blurred, in case the image is busy with several cars, people and other objects.
Also, be completely sure that what you select is exactly what you want blurred. Google mentions that once you blur something on Street View, it's blurred permanently.
Finally, enter your email (this is required), verify the captcha (if needed) and click Submit.
You should then receive an email from Google that says it'll review your report and get back to you once the request is either denied or approved. You may receive more emails from Google asking for more information regarding your request. Google doesn't offer any information on how long your request will take to process, so just keep an eye out for any further emails.