Modified 13 December 2019 by Eugen Plesa

The possibility to install extensions is one of the main features that makes Chrome so powerful. With over 190,000 extensions available in the Chrome Web Store, you can easily find some to enhance your productivity and overall internet browsing experience. Here you can see some of our favourite extensions.

 

One thing that most people forget about is the level of access to browsing data that they give to an extension when they install it. Extensions can have three levels of access to the sites that you visit:

  • On click - the extension can see and change the site you’re visiting only when you click on it
  • On specific sites - the extension can see and change only the listed sites
  • On all sites - the extension can always view and change the sites that you’re visiting

Based on their purpose, some extensions like script-blockers need constant access to your browsing activity, but others can function without it and still ask for a high level of permission by default. Here’s how to control which sites each of your Chrome extensions can access.

Type chrome:extensions into Chrome’s address bar and press enter.

 

This page shows you all the extensions that you have installed. Click on Details and then look for Site access. Now you can decide if the extension genuinely needs the degree of access that it currently has and act accordingly.

 

 

The extension used in the example allows users to find the code for a colour from webpages. Although it’s not always needed, this extension can access all sites, by default. To change its level of access, simply select ‘On click’ or ‘On specific sites’ and specify the web addresses. The change saves automatically, so you can now click return or close the tab.

Remember that some extensions need access to all sites, but their number is relatively small. If a site access change affects the functionality of an extension, you can go back and reverse it. You can also uninstall the extension and find a less invasive alternative.

Now you can feel relieved knowing that your browsing activity is visible only for the extensions that certainly need it.