The Ultimate Guide to Microsoft Edge Security Settings

Posted on by David Lukic in Security Tips October 29, 2020
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When Microsoft released Windows 10 in 2015, they decided to retire their Internet Explorer browser. IE had acquired a bad reputation for poor security and incompatibility with newer internet technologies, so it was replaced by a new browser, the Microsoft edge security settings has more security features than the IE, in a hope to compete with the current browsers. Hence, by optimize your Microsoft Edge internet options, you can be more secure on the

What is Microsoft Edge

Although Microsoft included a copy of IE in Windows 10, they buried it in the background and discontinued support for it. In its place, Microsoft released Edge, its sexy, new and providing a web browser with improved internet privacy and security that they hoped everyone would love. In January of 2020, they are releasing a completely rebuilt version using Chromium, an open-source browser code. Microsoft released an Edge version for Android and iOS in 2017. It wasn’t until 2019 they opened it up to macOS.

Microsoft Edge integrates with Cortana (the Siri-like assistant) and includes extensions that can be added from the Microsoft Store. Although more people now use Edge than IE, it still lags way behind Chrome, Safari, and Firefox as preferred browsers. To make Edge more secure, they removed some of IE’s legacy technologies such as Browser Helper Objects, toolbars, VBscript, VML, ActiveX, and Java. However, you can install browser extensions into Edge that are built on HTML, JavaScript, and CSS-based, which is the same as Chrome uses.

Microsoft Edge security settings

Microsoft Edge Security Settings

To access all the Edge security settings, you will need to access the main menu. Click the menu icon in the top right of your screen (three horizontal dots) and then choose Settings.

When you first open Settings, you can make Edge your default browser, set a light or dark theme, and set your homepage along with a couple of other generic settings.

  • Microsoft Edge Cache Settings

The next section is called Clear browsing data and refers to your browser cache. All browsers store a history of your activity to make web browsing a faster and richer experience. When you click the button labeled Choose what to clear,” you can select the items you want to manually clear. There is also a toggle button below that will clear the browser cache every time you close Edge.
You can choose to turn that feature on or off and it will use your check-off settings from above to clear what you want. From here, you will be closer to your optimal Microsoft Edge security settings.

  • How to Turn off Syncing

As with most other browsers, Microsoft Edge allows syncing across all devices. This enables you to access your bookmarks, reading lists, and favorites anywhere you are. However, Microsoft’s sync feature also collects and stores usernames, email addresses, and passwords. If you want to turn this feature off, use the toggle switch labeled Sync your favorites and reading list.”

  • Edges Advanced Settings

At the bottom of the general Edge settings, there is a button under Advanced settings called View advanced settings.” This button takes you to another whole section of advanced security and privacy settings. It is crucial top optimize the advanced settings for full Windows security with Microsoft Edge.

The top area allows you to block pop-ups with a toggle switch. You can also turn off Flash if you are concerned about opening up your computer to vulnerabilities. 

If you are using a VPN to mask your online activities, you can set your Proxy settings in Microsoft Edge in this area as well.

Microsoft Edge internet options

  • Privacy and Services

The next section is called Privacy and Services. Here, you can adjust what information Edge saves using the toggle switches for “Offer to save passwords” and “Save form entries.”

Although not all websites honor the DNT requests, you can turn them on using the toggle switch under “Send Do Not Track requests.”
You can turn Cookies on or off in here, also using the drop-down box. At the same time, just below it, you can turn on or off the right for websites to save protected media licenses on your device.

The final item in there is used to turn on SmartScreen Filter, which is Microsoft Edge’s built-in malware protection. You will definitely want to turn that on using the toggle switch.

  • How to Activate Private Browsing

Microsoft Edge has a private browsing option called InPrivate. When you open an InPrivate browsing window, Microsoft Edge does not save any cookies or store any browsing history. To open an InPrivate window, click the menu icon at the top-right (three horizontal dots) then New > InPrivate Window.

You can see from this list that Microsoft Edge security settings and privacy options are relatively limited. Therefore, some additional settings you can tweak to tighten up your security with Microsoft Edge internet options.

  • Microsoft Edge Internet Options

To access the internet options area, press the Windows Key + S. From the list that pops up, choose Internet Options. 
If you want to know how to delete history on edge, on the General tab, there is a check-on to delete your browsing history upon exit, Check this on.

The next tab is the Security tab. Here, you can use a slider to set the level of security you want to be used for all your internet activities. You can use the Custom Level button to fine-tune these settings. You can also set a list of trusted websites and blocked ones, as well.
Windows security Microsoft Edge
The Privacy tab is also useful for blocking pop-ups and turning on or off cookies. Most of this will only affect IE, but it can’t hurt to have these settings turned on if someone else uses your PC, and they prefer IE.

The Content tab affects only IE and addresses security certificates and autocomplete settings.
If you plan on using a VPN or a third-party browser, the Connections tab is where you will want to go to set up your proxy settings. This tab affects all browsers.

The Programs tab area only affects IE and manages browser extensions and how you use links.
Don’t forget the Advanced tab, where there are all kinds of hidden security and privacy settings whether you want to clear media licenses or delete cookies on Microsoft edge. Some affect only IE, but others are system wide.
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