When you visit a website that contains embedded content from social media sites (such as videos, posts, comments, or login buttons), that content often includes tracking code that those social media companies can use to link your user or device information (e.g., your IP address and browser details) with your browsing history.
In some cases, like with Facebook, this can happen regardless of whether you have an account or not. Embedded content from social media companies can detect and store your browsing activity and use it to target content and ads to you, even if the page you’re on is not related to that social media service. Sometimes you might want to load the embedded content despite the privacy risks, such as when you’re playing a social game linked with your Facebook account. Most times, though, you’d likely prefer to keep your browsing activity private instead.
When you use our app or browser extension, DuckDuckGo’s Embedded Social Media Protection blocks embedded content from Facebook on supported platforms. Over time, we’ll also be blocking similar embedded content from more companies. If you decide to unblock the content, this could load the content’s tracking code too. While companies will receive some user information each time you unblock content, this protection will help to reduce what they know about you overall.
Signing in to a website through a social media account also unblocks embedded content from that social media company automatically. This means that social media companies can see your activity on sites where you’ve signed in via their login form, the same as if you chose to unblock embedded content. All other DuckDuckGo Web Tracking Protections (such as 3rd-Party Tracker Loading Protection on websites you visit) remain active.
How to Disable this Protection
You can disable Embedded Social Media Protection for any website by following these instructions:
- Click the DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials extension icon in your toolbar.
- Toggle Protections OFF. The page will be added to your list of Unprotected Sites, which you can manage anytime from Settings.
Note that disabling Protections will also disable DuckDuckGo’s Web Tracking Protections for the whole site.
Prior versions on GitHub.