Review these 10 ESSENTIAL privacy settings in Microsoft Edge

Microsoft Edge is a good browser. However, it contains many unnecessary features that can compromise your online privacy.

By reviewing these features and determining whether you will use them, you can choose to enhance privacy while using Microsoft Edge.

Review these 10 privacy settings in Microsoft Edge

Therefore, I recommend modifying the privacy-related features outlined in this guide or deciding why you enable a specific feature. This way, you will be more mindful of the privacy-sensitive functions in the Microsoft Edge browser.

Enable do not track requests

Enabling this feature will depend on how websites respond to the request and how they interpret it. Some sites may show you advertisements not based on your browsing history from other websites. However, it’s important to note that many sites will still collect and use your browsing data for other purposes, such as improving security, providing tailored content, ads, and recommendations, and generating reporting statistics on their websites.

To enable the “Do Not Track” feature, please follow these steps:

  1. Open the Microsoft Edge browser.
  2. Click on the menu icon in the top-right corner.
  3. In the menu, click on “Settings.”
  4. In the settings, click “Privacy, search, and services.”
  5. Enable the option to “Send Do Not Track requests.”

Enable do not track requests

Allow sites to check if you have payment methods saved

Disabling this feature prevents websites with payment capabilities from checking whether you have added payment methods to the browser. Some websites may detect this and offer you their default payment method automatically. This poses a privacy risk, and I recommend disabling it if you are not actively using this feature.

To disable this feature in the Microsoft Edge browser, please follow these steps:

  1. Open the Microsoft Edge browser.
  2. Click on the menu icon located in the top-right corner.
  3. From the menu, select “Settings.”
  4. In the settings, click “Privacy, search, and services.”
  5. Locate the option “Allow sites to check if you have payment methods saved” and toggle it off.

Allow sites to check if you have payment methods saved

Sending optional diagnostic data

If you use the Microsoft Edge browser, it is a fact that some data is already sent to Microsoft. Additionally, if enabled, optional diagnostic data is also sent. I recommend checking whether this option is disabled if you do not wish to send such data.

To check and disable the optional diagnostic data in the Microsoft Edge browser, please follow these steps:

  1. Open the Microsoft Edge browser.
  2. Click on the menu icon located in the top-right corner.
  3. From the menu, select “Settings.”
  4. In the settings, click “Privacy, search, and services.”
  5. Scroll down to the section labeled “Services.”
  6. Look for “Optional diagnostic data” and ensure it is set to “Off” or disabled.
  7. Change settings by clicking the “Windows diagnostic data settings”.
  8. Turn off “Send optional diagnostic data” in the Windows privacy and security settings.

Sending optional diagnostic data

Help improve Microsoft products by sending the results of internet searches

When you search the internet using the Microsoft Edge browser, the search data is sent to Microsoft (if enabled). However, by default, this option is turned off. I recommend verifying that this option is disabled if you do not wish to send your search data to Microsoft.

To check and disable the search data sharing option in the Microsoft Edge browser, please follow these steps:

  1. Open the Microsoft Edge browser.
  2. Click on the menu icon located in the top-right corner.
  3. From the menu, select “Settings.”
  4. In the settings, click “Privacy, search, and services.”
  5. Scroll down to the section labeled “Services.”
  6. Look for the option “help improve Microsoft products by sending the results from searches on the web” and ensure it is set to “Off” or disabled.

Help improve Microsoft products by sending the results from searches on the web

Personalization & advertising

With your permission, Microsoft collects and uses your browsing activity to personalize advertisements and experiences for Microsoft Edge, Microsoft Bing, Microsoft News, and other Microsoft services. Microsoft uses your browsing activity to make your web experience, including ads, search results, and news articles, more relevant and valuable to you. You can disable this option if you do not wish to have this personalized experience.

To disable personalized advertising and experiences based on your browsing activity in Microsoft services, please follow these steps:

  1. Open the Microsoft Edge browser.
  2. Click on the menu icon located in the top-right corner.
  3. From the menu, select “Settings.”
  4. In the settings, click “Privacy, search, and services.”
  5. Scroll down to the section labeled “Services.”
  6. Look for the option “Allow Microsoft to save your browsing activity including history, usage, favorites, web content, and other browsing data to personalize Microsoft Edge and Microsoft services like ads, search, shopping and news.”
  7. Disable or toggle off this option to opt-out of personalized content based on your browsing activity.

Personalization & advertising

Suggest similar sites when a website can’t be found

If a website you are trying to open is unavailable or cannot be found, Microsoft Edge offers suggestions for similar websites to visit. However, I recommend disabling this feature if you consider this a privacy risk.

To disable the feature that provides suggestions for similar websites in Microsoft Edge, please follow these steps:

  1. Open the Microsoft Edge browser.
  2. Click on the menu icon located in the top-right corner.
  3. From the menu, select “Settings.”
  4. In the settings, click “Privacy, search, and services.”
  5. Scroll down to the section labeled “Services.”
  6. Look for the option “Suggest similar sites when a website can’t be found”.
  7. Disable or toggle off this option to prevent the display of similar website suggestions.

Suggest similar sites when a website can't be found

Save time and money with Shopping in Microsoft Edge

You may receive discount codes and alternatives in Microsoft Edge when visiting online stores. This feature can help obtain discounts or offers. However, it’s important to note that this feature involves transmitting your online shopping data to Microsoft. If you are concerned about privacy, you can disable this feature.

To disable the feature that provides discount codes and alternatives in Microsoft Edge, please follow these steps:

  1. Open the Microsoft Edge browser.
  2. Click on the menu icon located in the top-right corner.
  3. From the menu, select “Settings.”
  4. In the settings, click “Privacy, search, and services.”
  5. Scroll down to the section labeled “Services.”
  6. Look for the option “Save time and money with Shopping in Microsoft Edge”.
  7. Disable or toggle off this option to prevent your online shopping data transmission to Microsoft.

Save time and money with Shopping in Microsoft Edge

Show Collections and follow content creators in Microsoft Edge

Microsoft Edge offers suggestions to track creators online based on your browsing data. This feature involves transmitting your browsing data to Microsoft to provide these suggestions. If you do not use this feature or consider it a privacy concern, it is advisable to disable it.

To disable the feature that suggests tracking creators based on your browsing data in Microsoft Edge, please follow these steps:

  1. Open the Microsoft Edge browser.
  2. Click on the menu icon located in the top-right corner.
  3. From the menu, select “Settings.”
  4. In the settings, click “Privacy, search, and services.”
  5. Scroll down to the section labeled “Services.”
  6. Look for the option “Show Collections and follow content creators in Microsoft Edge”.
  7. Disable or toggle off this option to prevent the transmission of your browsing data to Microsoft for suggesting tracking creators.
  8. Click the “restart” button.

Show Collections and follow content creators in Microsoft Edge

Get notifications of related things you can explore with Discover

Microsoft Edge recommends things you can explore, such as travel destinations, weather, recipes, travel maps, and more. These notifications are based on your internet behavior and the websites you visit. You can disable this feature if you do not use or wish to use it.

To disable the feature that provides recommendations in Microsoft Edge, please follow these steps:

  1. Open the Microsoft Edge browser.
  2. Click on the menu icon located in the top-right corner.
  3. From the menu, select “Settings.”
  4. In the settings, click “Privacy, search, and services.”
  5. Scroll down to the section labeled “Services.”
  6. Look for the option “Get notifications of related things you can explore with Discover”.
  7. Disable or toggle off this option to prevent the display of recommendations based on your internet behavior.

Get notifications of related things you can explore with Discover

Location, Camera, and Microphone site permissions

Microsoft Edge can share your location and enable the camera or microphone when a website prompts. However, permission must be granted for these actions. If you prefer not to receive these notifications, it is recommended to disable these features entirely.

Disabling Location:

  1. In the address bar, type: edge://settings/content/location/
  2. Change “Ask before accessing (recommended)” to “Off”.
  3. Location site permissions will be disabled in Microsoft Edge.

disable location prompts in microsoft edge

Disabling Camera:

  1. In the address bar, type: edge://settings/content/camera/
  2. Change “Ask before accessing (recommended)” to “Off”.
  3. Camera site permissions will be disabled in Microsoft Edge.

disable camera prompts in microsoft edge

Disabling Microphone:

  1. In the address bar, type: edge://settings/content/microphone/
  2. Change “Ask before accessing (recommended)” to “Off”.
  3. Microphone site permissions will be disabled in Microsoft Edge.

disable microphone prompts in microsoft edge

I hope this helps you make an informed choice regarding privacy-related features in the Microsoft Edge browser. Thank you for reading!

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