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How to Use Content Settings in Chrome

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Google’s Chrome browser is arguably the best on the market currently, as it is extremely fast, easy to use, and highly customizable. Even though the majority of us use Chrome every day, we don’t really pay that much attention to the browser’s settings and options. The default settings are supposed to improve your web experience, but they also give companies and third-party trackers access to your online data. So if you would like to protect your privacy, or just tinker around with some of the content settings, here is what you need to know:


How to Use Content Settings in Chrome


Accessing Content Settings


Make sure you have the latest version of Chrome. If you don’t, you can download the latest one by going to Google Chrome’s download site. You may also be able to just close and restart your Chrome browser.



  1. Open your Chrome browser and click on the three dots on the top right side of your tab. This will open a dropdown menu. Chrome Menu Icon

  2. Now, click on Settings near the bottom of the menu. Chrome menu

  3. Under the Privacy and security section, find Site Settings and click on it. This will open the Site Settings tab, where you can tinker with your Chromes content options. Chrome Site Settings


Changing Your Site Settings


There are a lot of settings to play with, so we will cover what each one does and how to change them.


Settings


Settings


Cookies and Site Data


Sites create files called cookies when you visit them. These small files allow you to have a more convenient web experience by storing browsing info. Cookies allow sites to keep your accounts active, store website settings, and provide you with local content. If you delete cookies, the sites will sign you out of your accounts while also resetting the stored settings.



  1. To remove cookies, click on Cookies and site data. Chrome Cookie Settings

  2. Then, scroll down and click on See all cookies and site data. Chrome Site Data

  3. Now, click on Remove All. If you want to remove cookies individually, you can click on the Trash Can icon next to the chosen website. Chrome Site Data Tab


Location



  1. Follow the steps listed above to get to the Site Settings page, you can also type “chrome://settings/content” into your Search bar and hit Enter.

  2. Now, click on Location. Chrome Location Settings

  3. In the preset, Chrome will ask you when a site wants to see your location. To let the site know where you are, choose Allow.

  4. To block websites from accessing your location, you can toggle it off by pressing Ask before accessing. Chrome Location Tab


Camera and Microphone


Some websites like Google Hangouts or Skype will request to use your camera or microphone, and you can allow or block it when prompted.



  1. To block websites from accessing your camera or microphone, you can toggle it off by pressing Ask before accessing.


Motion Sensors


Some websites will access your device’s motion-sensing features (light or proximity sensors). With the default setting, the feature is allowed for sites, but it is recommended to toggle this off in order to protect your privacy.


NotificationsNotifications


With the default setting, Chrome will alert you when a site, application, or extension wishes to notify you. You can change this at your leisure. If you don’t want to get any notifications try using Incognito mode.


JavaScript


If you disable JavaScript, in some cases you will not be able to use certain features on a website while other websites might break completely or you will be stuck using a very old version of the page. It is highly recommended for you to keep this toggled on.


Images


With the default setting, this option is toggled on, which means that Chrome will display all images on a website. You should only toggle this off if your internet connection is really weak or slow, and you can’t load the images quickly.


Pop-ups and Redirects


With the default setting, Google Chrome prevents pop-ups from showing up on your screen. It is highly recommended to keep this option toggled on. If pop-ups keep appearing it is very likely your computer is infected with malware.


Ads


Chrome doesn’t offer an option to block all ads on websites, but it will block them on sites where they are intrusive or misleading. It is recommended to keep it this way, and if you would like to completely block ads, you can find some highly-rated extensions that do that on the Chrome web store.


Background Sync


This option allows websites to keep sending and receiving data in the background even when you close them. You should keep this option toggled on as it will make your web experience smoother.


Sound


If you want to prevent websites from playing sound, you can toggle this off.


Automatic downloads


The default setting requires sites to ask permission to download multiple files, but you can toggle it Off if you are worried about malware.


Unsandboxed Plugin Access


You can switch between blocking plugins from all websites and sites asking for permission. The toggled-on option is recommended.


Handlers


Protocol handlers handle links and URLs with certain schemes. Keep this toggled on.


MIDI Devices


Musical Instrument Digital Interface or MIDI is a protocol designed for recording and playing back music on digital synthesizers. Keep this toggled on.


Zoom Levels


The default zoom level on Chrome is 100%. You can manually adjust a website’s page magnification by using Ctrl and “+” or “-“.


USB Devices


Keep it toggled on for sites to ask permission when they want access to USB devices. If you don’t want to allow any access, toggle it off.


File Editing


You can toggle it off if you want to block sites from editing files or folders on your device.


PDF Documents


Chrome automatically opens PDF files in the browser. Toggle this on if you want to download them instead.


Protected Content


With the default setting, Chrome will play copyrighted content. If you prefer your browser not to do that by default, just disable the setting.


Clipboard


With the default setting, you will be asked when a site wants to see text and images copied to the clipboard.


Payment Handlers


Keep it toggled on to allow sites to install payment handlers. If you don’t want sites to install payment handlers, toggle it Off.


Additional FAQs


How do you change default email client in Chrome?


If you have Windows 10, then check out our article on making Gmail your default client. This article should cover what you need to get the job done.


The default content settings on Chrome are usually the ones you want to have, but some of them need to be changed based on your preferences. Keep experimenting with the options until you find the ones that work for you.

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