Why Must I Install the Privacy Guardian Browser Extension?

Many web browsers—including Chrome, Firefox and Opera—require the use of extensions (aka “add-ons”) for certain types of software to be compatible. Browser extensions add features to your web browser, in this case, the online privacy tool Privacy Guardian™.

Because Privacy Guardian is a browser-based anti- tracking application that protects your online activities from spying eyes while you are using the internet, adding the extension to your browser is the only way Privacy Guardian will be able to protect your browsing from tracking attempts. (Microsoft’s Internet Explorer and Edge browsers do not require you to enable extensions.)

Installing the Privacy Guardian extension

Even if you typically use just one web browser, it is recommended that you enable online privacy protection for each of your browsers. If you have not already done so, to enable privacy protection for your browsers:

  • Return to the Browsers tab in the Privacy Guardian application, from which you clicked to land on this web page. (Or, from the Privacy Guardian Dashboard, click Browsers.)
  • Here you will see a list of browsers available for privacy protection.
  • Choose a browser from the list, and click Enable.
  • Follow the onscreen steps as Privacy Guardian walks you through adding the browser extension for the browser.
  • Moving down the list of available browsers, click Enable and follow the onscreen instructions for each subsequent browser.

The difference between extensions and plug-ins

Note that extensions (or add-ons) are not the same as browser plug-ins. Plug-ins allow websites to embed and render content such as Flash movies or Java applets. Generally speaking, plug-ins are far less secure than extensions because websites can load them and exploit any security holes or bugs within them. Websites are prevented from commandeering your extensions to perform actions. Simply stated, whereas extensions add browser features you can use, plug-ins add browser features websites you visit can use.