DuckDuckGo browsers and extensions now protect against AMP tracking

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Privacy-focused search engine DuckDuckGo says it will ‘protect’ against webpage tracking with Google Accelerated Mobile Pages Framework (or AMP) enabled. “When loading or sharing a Google AMP page anywhere from DuckDuckGo apps (iOS/Android/Mac) or extensions (Firefox/Chrome), the original publisher’s webpage will be used instead. instead of the Google AMP version,” the company said. said on Twitter. The technology allows Google to track users, DuckDuckGo notes, and forces publishers to use AMP by prioritizing such links in its search results.

AMP was originally introduced – or so google said — as a way to make mobile web pages load faster. But developers and others viewed AMP with suspicion, and some took issue with how Google prioritized AMP pages in search results. Improvements to mobile websites since the introduction of AMP have made it somewhat less useful for publishers in recent years, and many (including The edge parent company Vox Media) do not use the framework at all.

Google spokeswoman Lara Levin said in an email to The edge that the claims regarding AMP were “misleading and repeated a number of misrepresentations”. AMP, she added, is an “open source framework that was developed in collaboration with publishers, technology companies and Google as a way to make web content load faster” that allows publishers and websites to “easily create great web experiences”.

DuckDuckGo’s announcement came as Brave, another privacy-focused browser, announced that it would also ignore AMP-rendered pages where possible. “And in cases where this is not possible, Brave will monitor page fetching and redirect users away from AMP pages before the page is even rendered, preventing AMP/Google code from loading and executing,” the company said in a statement. blog post. The technology is “harmful to users and to the web in general,” according to Brave’s post.

Update April 20 at 5:56 p.m. ET: Adds comment from Google spokesperson

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