What are the Ghostery Start Tab permissions used for?

The Ghostery Start Tab offers many features that require you to accept permissions within your browser.

The quick search feature provides you with results from our private search and a combination of your history and bookmarks, which accounts for many of the permissions listed. However, Ghostery does not store or change any of your personal data. All changes are made by you and stay local within the browser.

Ghostery Start Tab’s quick floating search bar helps you navigate quickly and easily. After clicking a result in the search bar, your current webpage will be redirected, and it will “Replace the page you see when opening a new tab”. Again, all actions will be done by you. The extension will simply provide a tool to navigate quickly to the requested URL.

A calculator and currency feature are included in the quick search results, where you can copy and paste the results directly. This data is not modified by the extension.

In addition, some location-based search results are provided if you decide to share your location. This feature is opt-in and you will always be asked if you want to share your location for nearby results or not. The setting for location sharing can be changed at any time.

What do the statistics in Ghostery Start Tab show?

Wherever you are going on the internet, Ghostery protects your privacy. Our rigorous tracker blocklist, Enhanced Anti-Tracking and Ad-Blocking technology prevents your personal information from being tracked by or transferred to third parties when you visit a website. The statistics you see in Ghostery Start Tab show you how these privacy features have impacted your browsing experience. These include the total number over time of trackers you’ve encountered, trackers you’ve blocked, data points anonymized, and ads blocked.

Total Trackers Blocked

The numbers in this section show how many trackers in total you’ve encountered by browsing the web, and how many of those Ghostery has blocked. The latter number will change based on your own Ghostery blocking settings, which you can modify any time within the extension.


Data Points Anonymized

This number shows how many private data points Ghostery has removed with Enhanced Anti-Trackingin order to protect your personal data from being transmitted to third parties.

Developed by our parent company Cliqz, our Enhanced Anti-Tracking feature is a heuristic approach to real-time, algorithmic tracking protection.  Like Ghostery’s main blocking mechanism, it monitors all third-party requests.  However, instead of simply blocking those requests, it analyzes them for personally identifiable information and then strips out that information before the request is sent.  Enhanced Anti-Tracking supplements Ghostery’s block-list approach by catching anything that might have been missed. Therefore, even if trackers are allowed to execute, you can feel safe knowing that all personal information has been anonymized in the request.


This method has the advantage over pure cookie blocking of reducing site breakage and working independently of the tracking method used. It also protects from fingerprinting and new tracking methods.

You can learn more about how it works in this article from Cliqz.

Ads Blocked


This number shows how many ads Ghostery has blocked with our built-in Enhanced Ad Blocker. This feature enables faster-loading websites without ads and clutter, and complements Ghostery tracker blocking and anti-tracking. It also protects against stealthy cryptocurrency mining by preventing websites from secretly hijacking your computer’s resources.

I don’t want to see these statistics. What can I do?

You can hide all privacy statistics from your Ghostery Tab view. Simple open a Ghostery Tab, go into Settings (gear icon on the top-right) and toggling off Privacy Stats. You can turn them back on at any time.

If you would like to disable these statistics altogether, you can choose to turn off each corresponding feature within the extension. First, open the Ghostery extension in the browser bar. To disable Total Trackers blocked, click Pause. To disable Data Points Anonymized, turn off the Enhanced Anti-Tracking feature (click to turn off or on). To disable Ads Blocked, turn off the Enhanced Ad Blocking feature (click to turn off or on).










When a feature is off, it will be grayed out in the extension, and its corresponding statistic will be gray and inactive in Ghostery Tab.

Note that if you turn off a feature, you will no longer be completely protected by Ghostery. We recommend that you leave them on, and hide the statistics from the Ghostery Tab display instead if you do not wish to see them.


What is Ghostery Start Tab and how is it different from a regular tab in Chrome?

Ghostery Start Tab is a new tab page that includes backgrounds, favorites, news and Ghostery’s anonymous quick search feature. It completely replaces the Chrome new tab, meaning you will see it each time you go to open a new tab or click on its icon in the browser bar.

Ghostery Start Tab is NOT included with the Ghostery privacy extension – you must download it separately.

What features does Ghostery Start Tab offer?

Ghost Search

Our built-in private search engine does not store any personally identifiable information (PII) and works with sophisticated anonymization techniques to ensure users’ search queries remain completely private.

Dynamic result cards are displayed directly in the search drop-down as you type: simply start typing, select a suggested site or press Enter for more results. You can easily view weather forecasts, measurement and currency conversions, or top news related to your query in real time.

If users do not find what they want from our result cards, their query is automatically directed to another search engine.  Users can select which search engine they’d like as backup from the settings page. DuckDuckGo is our recommendation and current default.


More space for favorite websites

Ghostery Start Tab increases the number of available tiles for your favorite websites from eight (in the default Chrome new tab) to twelve. Six tiles will automatically display your most visited sites. The remaining six tiles can be filled manually with your favorite websites.


Customizable backgrounds

You can select different backgrounds to give Ghostery Start Tab a fresh look. Simply click the gear icon at the top right of the page to make your selection.


Top News

The Top News feature informs Ghostery Start Tab users about the most important events of the day. All linked articles originate from respected and trustworthy news domains. You can choose between a geographic variety of sources.


Privacy Statistics

The privacy statistics in Ghostery Start Tab show how Ghostery’s privacy features have impacted your browsing experience. On display are: the total number of trackers you’ve encountered, trackers you’ve blocked, data points anonymized, and ads blocked, over time. We’re working on bringing a more detailed version of this feature to the tab and extension, so stay tuned!

You can visit your Ghostery Start Tab settings to turn the statistics display on or off.


Add or remove features

You can choose the features you want to display (background, most visited sites, favorites, Ghost Search, Top News) on your default Ghostery Start Tab page by clicking on the gear icon at the upper right.

Can I change the way Ghostery Start Tab looks?

Yes, you can customize your background and which features you’d like displayed in your default Ghostery Start Tab.  Simply click the gear icon at the top right of the page to make your selection.

On which browsers can I use Ghostery Start Tab?

Currently, Ghostery Start Tab is only available for download on Chrome. We are in the testing process with Firefox, and plan to offer it on other browsers in the future too.

You can use Ghostery Start Tab on your mobile device! It is built into our mobile browser, Ghostery Privacy Browser for iOS and Android, which you can download respectively on the App Store or Play Store.

Can I get Ghostery Start Tab on my mobile device?

Ghostery Start Tab is built into our mobile browser, Ghostery Privacy Browser for iOS and Android, which you can download respectively on the App Store or Play Store.