What is DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials and should I install it?

You are being tracked online most of the time. Virtually every website you visit tracks, logs, and profiles you for various reasons; showing you personalized ads is just one of them. To better protect your privacy from online tracking, you can install DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials in your Safari browser. This easy-to-install browser add-on for Safari will help you escape ad trackers and keep your search history private.

So what is DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials? Should you install it in Safari?


What is DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials?

DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials is a browser extension that allows users to browse the Internet privately. The extension is available for all major web browsers including Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, Opera, and Safari.

The following are ways that DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials improves your online privacy:

  • The browser extension will block all third party trackers on the sites you visit.
  • You can view a website’s privacy rating indicating how much you can trust the site before and after the implementation of DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials protection.
  • Your search history will remain private if you make DuckDuckGo your default search engine.

Most browsers block third-party trackers once they are loaded in your browser. But this method can send your IP address or other identifiers to third parties when the trackers are loaded.

However, DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials does not allow third party scripts (i.e. trackers) from Google, Facebook and other companies to load, preventing those companies from collecting your IP address or any other type of identifier.

Smartphone users can download DuckDuckGo Privacy Browser on their devices to search and browse privately. Android users can download the DuckDuckGo Privacy Browser from GooglePlay, and iPhone users need to visit the App Store to download it.

Why you should care about your privacy

Screenshot of DuckDuckGo.com privacy status

When you visit a website, first-party and third-party trackers are likely to be active in the background, monitoring and profiling your behavior.

Proprietary trackers, which allow site owners to track users, are useful to both users and website owners. This is because first-party crawlers help site owners improve the usability of websites.

However, third-party trackers, which belong to services other than the websites you visit, are creepy. These trackers collect your personal data for multiple reasons, including analytics, advertising, social media, and more.

Worse yet, third-party tracking may also collect your personal information. Facebook may act as a third-party tracker. Think about what Facebook might know when you’re online.

In short, third-party trackers are like someone who takes notes on what you do when you visit somewhere. Would you let someone do that in real life? If not, why are we letting them get away with it online?

Therefore, you should do everything in your power to enhance your privacy while browsing online. And installing DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials is one of the best ways to do it.

Should you use DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials in Safari?

To demonstrate how DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials works, we focus on Safari, Apple’s default web browser.

Safari does well when it comes to privacy as it has many essential privacy-enhancing features. Users have options to block cross-site (ie, third-party) tracking and hide IP addresses. Safari also allows users to make DuckDuckGo Search a default search engine.

The Safari browser already offers users options to browse privately. So, should you install DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials on Safari? The answer is simply yes.

The DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials browser extension will improve Safari’s tracking protections on the sites you visit. And it will allow you to access DuckDuckGo’s privacy dashboard within the Safari browser.

This privacy dashboard will let you know the privacy rating and other privacy metrics of the websites you visit. The privacy rating grade ranges from A to F. The privacy grade “A” means that the websites you visit are excellent at protecting your privacy. And the privacy grade “F” represents the poor performance of websites in terms of protecting the privacy of visitors.

Simply put, DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials makes privacy on Safari simple. Two privacy tools, Safari and DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials, working together, can better protect your identity online.

How to install DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials in Safari

Close the Safari browser and open the app store on your Mac. Search for “DuckDuckGo Privacy for Safari.” Click on the DuckDuckGo Privacy for Safari application, then click the Get button.

Screenshot of DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials on the App Store

Click on Install. Your Mac will prompt you to use your Touch ID to authenticate or to type your password, depending on your Mac’s settings. Once authenticated, the installation process will start and finish quickly.

Screenshot of Mac authentication to install DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials

After the installation is complete, the Open button will appear in the browser extension. Close the app store.

Full screen shot of installing DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials

Open Safari and go to the Settings menu. Click on the Search and make DuckDuckGo your default search engine to search privately if you haven’t already. You can get faster results on DuckDuckGo with search operators.

Screenshot of Safari settings to make DuckDuckGo a default search engine

Click on the extensions tab and enable privacy panel Y privacy protection checking both boxes. Close your Safari browser.

Enabling DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials Screenshot

Open Safari browser and visit any website. You will see the degree of privacy of the website in the Safari browser. Click on the degree of privacy of the website you have visited. The privacy panel will open to show you details about how DuckDuckGo’s privacy essentials improve your privacy.

Screenshot of DuckDuckGo showing B+ plus privacy gradeHow to uninstall DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials from Safari

And what if you decide it’s not for you? You can also easily uninstall DuckDuckGo’s privacy essentials. Go to Safari’s Settings menu and click the extensions tab. uncheck privacy panel Y privacy protection in the left sidebar. Then close Settings window.

Screenshot of disabling DuckDuckGo protection in Safari settings

Go to the launch pad and look for the DuckDuckGo Privacy for Safari Drag and drop app Compartment to remove the app.

Keep your browsing private

With tech giants fiercely tracking users, keeping your browsing private is your right. Using DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials can help you do that.

Coupled with Safari’s built-in privacy protection (as well as the privacy controls offered by other browsers), this easy-to-add browser extension will give you privacy you can trust. Consider using a reputable virtual private network (VPN) on your device to further enhance online privacy and security. You can also explore other anonymous browsers like Tor for private browsing.

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