DuckDuckGo To Ensure Better Privacy From Microsoft Trackers; Find Out How

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DuckDuckGo landed itself in soup after the reports of it permitting Microsoft trackers on its platform emerged. Known for its privacy-focused ecosystem, DukcDuckGo is used by multiple users globally but is now getting backlashes for allowing Microsoft to track scripts on external or third-party sites. This is one major privacy issue that DuckDuck says will be taken care of soon.

Here’s the latest development.

DuckDuckGo To Ensure Better Privacy From Microsoft Trackers

DuckDuckGo To Block Microsoft, Google, Facebook & Amazon Trackers Going Forward

DuckDuckGo has confirmed that it will block all Microsoft trackers on its platform going forward. This is a recent development that comes following the security research report released back in May this year stating the privacy-focused online web browser is enabling trackers from Microsoft.

First highlighted by Zach Edwards (a security researcher), DuckDuckGo has been allowing third-party tracking scripts only from Microsoft but has blocked other browser extensions including Chrome, Firefox, Opera, and Safari. Edwards found this flaw with the DuckDuckGo privacy browser during an audit.

DuckDuckGo has now shared a statement that confirms it already has started working on a fix, which will be expanded to the browser by next week. The company will block all third-party trackers, including those from Microsoft, on both iOS and Android platforms and on the desktop.

“Over the next week, we will expand the third-party tracking scripts we block from loading on websites to include scripts from Microsoft in our browsing apps (iOS and Android) and our browser extensions (Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Edge and Opera), with beta apps to follow in the coming month,” DuckDuckGo said in the blogpost.

This expands the 3rd-Party Tracker Loading Protection, which blocks identified tracking scripts from Facebook, Google, and other companies from loading on third-party websites, to now include third-party Microsoft tracking scripts.

The platform emphasises that this web tracking protection is not offered by most other popular browsers by default and sits on top of many other DuckDuckGo protections. Our 3rd-Party Tracker Loading Protection helps address this vulnerability, by stopping most 3rd-party trackers from loading in the first place, providing significantly more protection, said the privacy-focused platform.

Just for reference, DuckDuckGo’s third-party tracker loading protection was activated by default on its browser and has been blocking the tracking scripts from Google, Facebook, and others but not the Microsoft scripts redirected from Linkedin and Bing website domains.

DuckDuckGo is also working towards improving the advertising experience on its platform. According to DUckDuckGo, “When you click on a Microsoft-provided ad that appears on DuckDuckGo, Microsoft Advertising does not associate your ad-click behaviour with a user profile. It also does not store or share that information other than for accounting purposes.”

DuckDuckGo has also created a new help page to offer a comprehensive explanation of all the web tracking protections across its platforms. The dedicated page will let users study different kinds of web privacy protections on its platforms. You can learn about different web tracking protections, DuckDuckGo’s product roadmap, etc.

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Story first published: Monday, August 8, 2022, 14:48 [IST]

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