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I assume that a VPN stops my cable company from collecting info on me but....

does a VPN stop Google from collecting info on me? For example, if I search via Google or use Chrome to access the internet?

I assume that if I access Instagram via a VPN Facebook can still collect info on me?

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Assuming is not knowing, only a functioning brain can save one. If you do not want them to spy on you, throw your modern phone away, stop using Mac or Windows on PC, do not buy any products at all (West spies on you, if you want to buy products from east, West claims they spy and forbid it to you). Going deeper, check each single chip and check which 1 and 0's do what.

All in all, VPN does not stop anybody collecting your data, it makes this data just less useful for them, but nobody will switch off tracking. Google Chrome and any google, Microsoft or Apple products spy on you where Google lately lost on court as they collected data even after user did set their OS not to do so. If you use non US services, then your tax payed security services might watch you even more as you might be spy.

I mean, you already use google, you already use Facebook, honestly, they track you for longer and they probably can assign any IP to you due to your behaviour, social contacts, ....

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Actually I don't use Google or Facebook. Well, I do use Instagram which is Facebook now, and in the past I did have a Facebook account -- all of which means Facebook is collecting info on me. But I get your point. And that is why I stopped using Firefox -- it's pointless. And to be honest, the only reason I pay for a VPN is so I can get free movies and TV shows.

A while back I pulled up all the info that Google had on me. It was stunning. The stunning part was -- or is -- the ability of anyone who hacks my password to access all that info. But to be fair, Microsoft presumably collects all the same info. However, it can't be accessed by the hoi polloi, that I know of. I suppose it is to Google's credit that they at least let you see some of what they are doing -- and in the process appear to be doing evil in a way that Apple isn't, which is misleading to the public.

At any rate, after my data "breach" I deleted everything Google had on me and stopped using Google Services, which probably doesn't do anything but make the end user (that would be me) experience more of a hassle. A few days ago I ditched Firefox for the new Microsoft Edge, which of course has Google underneath, which is what prompted my question: does a VPN do any good when it comes to privacy? 

Not only is that answer apparently "No," but there is no way to be sure (that I know of) that the service offering the VPN is not collecting info and selling it, because the VPN literally sees everything that you do and you have nothing but their word that they are not using it for evil. At least Microsoft publicly admits that there is no way to turn off tracking in Edge.

There really is no way around it. If a person is going to be a part of the modern world then the Master's of the Universe are going to collect data on you. I suspect as time goes by this will no longer be an issue. It will just be accepted. There will be so much data available publicly on everyone that it will be a moot point. In my life time alone I have seen the internet go from a place where people went to be anonymous to a place where people go to be seen. But I digress.


Oh, and along with dumping Firefox I dumped Duck Duck Go. For the same reason -- it was clunky and mostly pointless.

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