DuckDuckGo’s Search Deal Stops Browser From Blocking Microsoft Trackers

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DuckDuckGo’s search syndication take care of Microsoft is the foundation of a difficulty resulting in information being tracked within the firm’s allegedly non-public cellular internet browser.

It was found this week that DuckDuckGo’s cellular browser transfers information to Microsoft-owned properties when visiting sure web sites.

This was confirmed by DuckDuckGo CEO Gabriel Weinberg, who’s working to protect the corporate’s repute after the doubtless damaging discovery was shared on Twitter.

Does that imply the privacy-centric DuckDuckGo isn’t as non-public as we’ve come to consider?

Right here’s what was revealed about DuckDuckGo’s browser, what the CEO has to say in response, and why critics aren’t glad.

DuckDuckGo Browser Permits Microsoft Trackers

Safety researcher Jacob Edwards posted proof in a prolonged Twitter thread exhibiting DuckDuckGo’s cellular browser transferring information to Microsoft’s LinkedIn and Bing Advertisements.

If this have been an internet browser from another firm, the transferring of knowledge to a third-party wouldn’t be something out of the atypical.

For DuckDuckGo, an organization that markets itself as one which doesn’t monitor customers, that is turning into fairly a scandal.

Privateness is the corporate’s whole mission assertion. “We don’t monitor you. Ever,” reads DuckDuckGo’s homepage on the time of this writing.

Any quantity of monitoring due to this fact goes towards DuckDuckGo’s mission assertion.

Though this challenge seems to be unique to Micrsoft-owned properties, DuckDuckGo remains to be promising a stage of safety it’s not delivering on.

DuckDuckGo CEO Responds To Criticism

Weinberg was fast to reply to the criticism of his firm, confirming Microsoft trackers aren’t blocked on the DuckDuckGo browser.

Nonetheless, he makes an attempt to downplay the state of affairs as a result of it doesn’t impression DuckDuckGo’s search outcomes.

“This isn’t about search,” he begins in assertion printed to the Hacker Information discussion board.

Isn’t it, although?

If it weren’t for the search syndication deal between DuckDuckGo and Microsoft, this wouldn’t be a difficulty within the first place.

Whereas it might have “no bearing on our search outcomes,” as a DuckDuckGo spokesperson tells PCMag.com, it’s intrinsically associated to the search contract with Microsoft.

DuckDuckGo’s public relations tour doesn’t finish there. Anybody criticizing the corporate on Twitter is met with the identical copied and pasted reply from Weinberg:

“Hello, FYI — this isn’t about our search engine, and we really prohibit Microsoft scripts in our browsers, together with blocking their third occasion cookies. If you need full context, I left an in depth rationalization on reddit.”

Within the Reddit thread he hyperlinks to, Weinberg clarifies DuckDuckGo doesn’t promise anonymity when shopping outdoors its search engine.

Additional, he contends that “nothing can present 100% safety,” and what DuckDuckGo presents is “the most effective factor on the market for mainstream customers.”

In Abstract

What are the important thing takeaways from all this?

In brief — the corporate that guarantees to not monitor you ever is definitely monitoring you generally.

We’ve realized that whole anonymity isn’t assured when shopping with DuckDuckGo outdoors its search engine.

DuckDuckGo is contractually obligated to permit Microsoft trackers in its internet browser.

The corporate continues to vow safety from information trackers when conducting search queries on DuckDuckGo.com.

Whether or not this has a long-lasting impression on DuckDuckGo’s repute stays to be seen.

To DuckDuckGo’s credit score, it’s uncommon to see a CEO get in entrance of a difficulty so rapidly and publicly handle peoples’ issues. Weinberg has been nothing however clear concerning the search deal between DuckDuckGo and Microsoft.


Featured Picture: Ascannio/Shutterstock



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