5 steps to hide your house on Google Street View
We explain how to hide your house on Google Street View and cover the advantages and disadvantages of doing so.
- Open the Google Maps website or the Google Maps mobile app.
- Search for your home address using the search bar at the top of the screen. Alternatively, manually locate it by moving around the map.
- At the bottom of the screen (on web/desktop) you will see a toolbar that includes a person icon – drag and drop this to your exact home location. You will then be taken into ‘street view’.
If you’re using the Google Maps mobile app you can ‘tap’ the road outside of your property to ‘drop a red pin’ and a ‘street view’ preview will appear at the bottom of the screen. Select the preview to enter Google Street View.
- When you have the front of your house on the screen select the three dots (vertical ellipsis) at the top of the screen and ‘report a problem’. Alternatively, select ‘report a problem’ at the bottom right-hand corner of the screen (if viewing on web/desktop).
- You should now be on the ‘report inappropriate Street View’ screen.
– Centre the front of your house in the image preview
– Request blurring – select ‘my home’ and enter further details as instructed
– Enter your email address, ‘submit’ and wait for a confirmation reply from Google
Blurring out your house on Google Street View can have advantages and disadvantages:
- Burglars won’t be able to work out your home security weaknesses. This might include a low fence to the side of your property, or where your CCTV cameras are.
- The image of your house might include yourself (or a family member) in the driveway. Blurring will remove the connection between you and the property.
- If you own a high-value car this will prevent it from being visible on your driveway.
- It will pull data away from the clutches of Google.
- If you’re in the public eye and gain a lot of media attention, you might have an extra need for privacy. Paul McCartney, for example, has his house blurred.
- It’s a permanent change. One that future owners (or potential buyers) of your house might not be best pleased about.
- The house will still appear on ‘satellite view’ – it only removes it from Google Street View.
- Burglars scouting out areas might actually wonder what you’re hiding. What is so special about this house and what treasures might lie within?
- Your neighbours might hate that it has changed the look of the road on Google Street View.
- Note that other mapping services might also have a roadside view of your house. This includes Microsoft Bing, which is currently far less populated than Google Maps.
In conclusion, there are many things to consider before putting in the request to Google, especially as the change is permanent. Be careful if you don’t own the house – your landlord might not be best pleased.