MICROSOFT may be monitoring your search results on your Windows PC – but you can stop it in seconds.
This feature is designed to improve Microsoft products, but not everyone may want to participate.
It is part of Microsoft Edge – the browser available on Windows 10 and 11.
If you’ve purchased or updated a Windows PC in recent years, you’re likely using Microsoft Edge.
And you’re probably using it too, unless you switch to Microsoft rival browsers like Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.
Now tech blog Ghacks revealed an important feature that you might want to turn off.
It keeps track of your search results that you have requested across all search engines.
That includes Microsoft’s Bing, as well as google or DuckDuckGo.
Microsoft said: “Help improve Microsoft products by submitting results from web searches.
“This data is never linked to you or your device.”
Microsoft enabled the feature after asking for your permission in a rather vague pop-up.
But it has a support page with important details about what is collected.
This includes the exact search terms you entered, the results displayed, how you interact with the results, and general user data.
Tech giants are constantly battling with themselves over whether to collect more data to improve products at the expense of users.
Microsoft lessens the impact by unlinking the data it collects.
That means the data Microsoft receives is not linked to you or your device.
So if Microsoft gets a specific search result, they won’t know you looked up that information.
If you want to turn off this feature, it only takes a few seconds.
First, get Microsoft Edge on your Windows PC.
Then type edge://settings/privacy#searchServiceImprovement in the address bar.
Turn the setting in Service Improvements and Search to the off location.
If you change your mind, you can re-enable the button at any time.
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