There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch, or at least so they say.
When we’re browsing free websites on free web browsers, it is easy to think that the old adage doesn’t apply to you, when deep down you know that it most certainly does. The common form of payment we make is by seeing advertisements placed on the websites we visit. These subliminal payments are much more valuable to the “free” sites we browse if they are more relevant to us. Companies make these ads more relevant to us by tracking our web behavior to learn more about who we really are.
Data is the new oil, they say.
Not only is the lunch not free, you’re paying for it with something that is extremely valuable. This new truth has led to a growing number of people wanting to block trackers when they’re surfing the internet. Recent revelations about Google Chrome showed a shockingly high number of trackers active on the browser.
Trackers are active on all browsers too, and now Microsoft has decided it wants to give Edge users a chance to disable trackers, so they browse the web without paying the heavy fee.
The Edge tracker prevention feature is still in testing, but let’s have a look at how you can activate it.
This is how to block trackers on Microsoft Edge
- For now, tracking prevention is only available on preview builds of Microsoft Edge. To use tracking prevention, you’ll need to download and install the Microsoft Edge Insider build version 188.8.131.52 or later.
- Open the Microsoft Edge Insider Build.
- Copy edge://flags#edge-tracking-prevention, paste it into the Microsoft Edge address bar, and hit enter.
- In the dropdown menu select Enabled and then click Relaunch Now.
Once you’ve followed the above instructions, you’ll tracking prevention enable on a special preview version of Microsoft Edge.
You can then adjust your privacy settings by copying edge://settings/privacy and pasting it into the Edge address bar.
These preview versions are the first to receive new features as this is where Microsoft test new features before releasing them to the general population. This means that the browser might not be as stable as your regular version of Microsoft Edge.
These Insider builds are not just a good way for developers to test new features. They also offer a great way for you to test out experimental new features without having to mess around with the settings for your main browser.
Whether you want to allow websites to track your online behavior is up to you. Microsoft is testing out this new feature and is committed to bringing it to the full version of Microsoft Edge. If you’re unsure about whether you’d like to use it or not, why not take this opportunity to test out the new feature before it lands on the main app.