Edge 118: updated on-page search may send data to Microsoft

By admin

Microsoft
ORG

has released

Microsoft Edge 118
ORG

, a new stable version of the

Chromium
ORG

-based web browser. The new browser version fixes security issues in

Edge
ORG

and introduces a handful of changes.

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One
CARDINAL

of the important ones is an improved Find on page feature. All browsers support an option to search for text on the active website. It is a useful feature, especially if a website is large, as it may help you find specific words or phrases that you are interested in.

It works by using

Ctrl-F
PRODUCT

to open a search field and typing text. The browser processes the page locally and highlights any matches.

Edge

118
CARDINAL

: Find on page


Microsoft
ORG

has updated Find on page in

Edge 118
ORG

to include AI capabilities. We previewed the improved find on page feature back in

October 2022
DATE

when it launched in

Edge Canary
ORG

.


Search
ORG

is extended now, as it may find related matches and diacritics now as well. Good if you mistyped a word or phrase, as

Edge
ORG

may still highlight instances with the right spelling automatically.

While that sounds good on paper,

Edge
ORG

users need to be aware that Find on page’s new functionality requires that data is processed on

Microsoft
ORG

servers.

In other words: information is transferred to

Microsoft
ORG

whenever the new find on page functionality is used.

The official

Edge
ORG

release notes provide no information on the data, but

Microsoft
ORG

‘s Edge Privacy Whitepaper does.

When users enable "include related matches in Find on page",

Microsoft Edge
ORG

submits the following data to

Microsoft
ORG

cloud services using a HTTPS connection:

The text of the webpage.

The search term.

A service token.


Microsoft
ORG

does not specify what the service token contains, only that it "doesn’t contain any user-identifiable information".

A cloud service processes the data then to find related words or phrases in the text. The information is returned to

Edge
ORG

and

Microsoft
ORG

is deleting the submitted data immediately afterwards according to the whitepaper. The related matches feature is not available in

InPrivate
ORG

browsing mode.

Some users may not see the new functionality yet in

Edge
ORG

, even after upgrading to

Edge 118
PRODUCT

. It looks as if

Microsoft
ORG

is rolling it out gradually to the entire

Edge
ORG

population.

How to turn off related matches in Find on page in

Microsoft Edge
ORG


Microsoft Edge
ORG

users may disable this new AI-powered feature in

Edge
ORG

to prevent the browser from submitting on-page search data to

Microsoft
ORG

. This is done in the following way:

Open the Privacy settings in

Edge
ORG

, either by pasting edge://settings/privacy in the browser’s address bar and pressing the Enter-key, or by selecting

Menu > Settings > Privacy
ORG

, search, and services.

Scroll
ORG

down to the Services section on the page. Locate Include related matches in Find on page there. Toggle the feature to Off (shows a white background and black dot in that state).

You can undo the change at any time later by repeating the steps outlined above.

Closing Words

Edge 118 does not inform users about the remote processing of data when find on page’s related matches functionality is used.

Microsoft
ORG

should at least add the information to the interface or inform users on

first
ORDINAL

selection of on page find that the selection submits data to the company.

Now You: do you use on page find?

Summary Article Name Edge 118 new find on page feature may send data to

Microsoft Description Microsoft Edge
ORG


118
CARDINAL

ships with improved on-page search functionality, but it comes at a cost, as data is processed remotely. Author

Martin Brinkmann
PERSON

Publisher Ghacks Technology News Logo

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