DuckDuckGo brings app tracking protection to Android
In April, Apple released App Tracking Transparency, much to the delight of privacy-conscious users (and much to the chagrin of Mark Zuckerberg), allowing iPhone users to opt out of having their data tracked by any third parties.
Android systems, on the other hand, don't have things as clear-cut as Apple's ATT system, in regards to offering the freedom of choosing who tracks your information to sell to advertisers.
One well-wishing third-party, however, has taken a step to give Android users that convenience. DuckDuckGo is a well-known search engine, which has always placed its 80 million users' privacy above all else. It doesn't churn search results through personalization filters, doesn't store IP addresses, or keep track of any user info—all things which Google does.
And DuckDuckGo is working on a new feature—modeled on Apple's popular App Tracking Transparency—to integrate right into its app, called DuckDuckGo Privacy Browser.
App Tracking Protection," will act like something of a "local VPN" (in other words, contained only on your device without connecting to an external server), stopping in their tracks third-party apps from collecting any of your personal data to sell off.The new feature, called "
App Tracking Protection is currently in a private beta testing phase, preparing for a global launch in a coming update. Aside from providing total privacy from probing eyes across Android devices, you can also opt to receive daily or weekly summaries of ATP's activities, to see just how many trackers you've been avoiding.
You can also sign up to join the waitlist for beta testing for this new feature, simply by downloading DuckDuckGo Privacy Browser (or updating it if you already have it), then going in to the app's Settings > Privacy > App Tracking Protection. There you can click “Join the Private Waitlist," and you'll be notified once you've joined the group of private beta testers.