Microsoft Edge LogoSource: Windows Central

What you need to know

  • People have complained about Microsoft Edge gathering browser data from Firefox and Chrome without permission.
  • Microsoft states that people are given the "opportunity to import data during setup."
  • If a person closes Microsoft Edge early during the first run experience, some data might not be deleted.

Microsoft Edge was a hot topic over the weekend as a result of a Reddit post alleging the browser imports browser data from Chrome and Firefox without permission. The text of the original post has since been deleted, but many comments echo the same sentiment, alleging that Microsoft Edge gathers data from Chrome and Firefox without permission.

One Redditor, orcusmorcus, states:

I just installed Edge today for testing, and I noticed my bookmarks from Firefox appear in the background/browser BEHIND the import acceptance dialog. The bookmarks disappeared after I said I didn't want it to import anything. Obviously it still went looking before asking!

Other comments are along the same lines. The issue seems to be twofold. First, based on people's experience, Microsoft Edge is importing browser data before you give it permission to do so. You can opt to have that information discarded if you'd like, but for at least a moment, it was gathered before you gave Edge permission to do so. Second, if you stop the first run experience of Microsoft Edge early, some of the data might not be fully deleted.

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We reached out to Microsoft after spotting the Reddit thread. A Microsoft spokesperson sent us the following statement:

We believe browser data belongs to the customer and they have the right to decide what they should do with it. Like other browsers, Microsoft Edge offers people the opportunity to import data during setup.

As a bit of background information, during the first run experience of Microsoft Edge, people are shown an option to discard or keep imported data. If they choose to discard it, the data is deleted. If a person stops the first run experience early, by using Task Manager or another way that cuts it off, there can be some residual data that might not be deleted.

Note that there are options for discarding or keeping data. There is not an option to not have the data imported in the first place.

If you are concerned about the imported data, you should go through the first run experience entirely and select to discard the data. If you close the experience early with Task Manager some data could stick around.