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DuckDuckGo’s new app, browser extension grade websites on their privacy

Image used with permission by copyright holder
The big internet browsers are great, but they can be a little relaxed when it comes to privacy. Because of that, a few internet browsers, like Tor and DuckDuckGo, have popped up with a heavy focus on privacy. And the latter of the two just launched a few new features in its mobile app, along with a new browser extension that should help make your browsing a little less open.

In a blog post, DuckDuckGo highlighted the Privacy Browser app and browser extension as a way to achieve a much more private browsing experience, at least compared to simply opening up incognito mode in the internet browser you already use.

“It’s hard to use the Internet without it feeling a bit creepy – like there’s a nosey neighbor watching everything you do from across the street,” said DuckDuckGo in its blog post. “Except, instead of a nosey neighbor, it’s a vast array of highly sophisticated tracker networks, run by big companies like Google and Facebook, recording everything you do online, often without your knowledge, and selling their findings to the highest bidder via targeted ads.”

There are a few ways that the app and browser extension help in keeping your browsing private. For starters, if you visit a website with ad network tracking — which is most of them — the app and extension will block that tracking. If a website has an encrypted version that you’re not being automatically redirected to, the extension and app will help make sure that’s where you end up.

The app and extension don’t just block ad tracking, they’ll also report back on it. When you visit a website, DuckDuckGo will show you which trackers are being used, and give the website a so-called “privacy grade,” with A being the best and F the worst — all based on the trackers and encryption being used.

While these features are certainly helpful, not everyone will be willing to ditch their current browser. That’s why the browser extension is so helpful — it’s available for Google Chrome, Firefox, and Safari — so you won’t need to stop using your preferred browser in order to still get the features.

You can download the app for yourself straight from the Google Play Store, or install it as a browser extension in Chrome, Firefox, and Safari.

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