FAQ

If you have a question that’s not answered below, please email us.

Disconnect (App for Mac, Windows, iOS and Android)

Overview

What is Disconnect?

Disconnect is our company’s name as well as the name of our core product, which is available for all of your devices. There is a paid version and a free version.

Why should I use Disconnect?

Disconnect protects your privacy by blocking thousands of invisible trackers, sources of malware, and empowers you to enjoy a more private and secure online experience. A description of features and benefits can be found on our homepage.

What is the difference between the free version and the paid version of Disconnect?

The free version of our desktop product allows you to block thousands of invisible trackers and malware sites across all your browsers and apps. Both the free mobile and desktop product provides the ability to search privately and see how websites collect and use your data.

The premium version of the desktop and mobile applications also protect you from Wi-Fi snooping by encrypting all Internet traffic with Disconnect’s virtual private network (VPN). You can also choose the location of Disconnect’s VPN servers to keep your location private and access the Internet as though you are in another country.

What platforms does Disconnect run on?

Premium version

How do I know if Disconnect’s VPN is working?

The home screen of the app will indicate whether Protection is on or off.

How many devices does my paid subscription cover?

A subscription covers 3 unique devices. These devices can be any combination of computers, phones and tablets. If you want to add Disconnect to another device, but you are at your limit, simply uninstall the product from one of your other devices, and you will be able to install it on the new one.

Where do I find my code?

If you provided us with your email when you signed up, the code was included in the email that we sent you after you purchased with the subject “Your Disconnect receipt and upgrade instructions”. If you did not get an email, or no longer have easy access to it, you can also find the code on the Account Details page in the Settings section of the desktop and mobile apps. We can also send the code to you directly if you contact us at support@disconnect.me.

How do I add other devices?

If you submitted your email when paying, you can open the email we sent with subject “Your Disconnect receipt and upgrade instructions”. If you did not receive the email, or no longer have easy access to it, instructions to add additional devices are available inside the app you paid for. Simply open Disconnect on that device, click the Settings icon, then click on Account Details and click the “Add new device” section. You can then click on your device type from the list and receive upgrade instructions. Please note: on some phones, you need to scroll to the right in the “Add a new device” section to see instructions for installing on Mac and Windows.

My connection seems to be a bit slower when I have the Protection turned on. Why?

Disconnect encrypts all your Internet activity through our virtual private network (VPN). All VPNs introduce some slowdown. Independent tests show our VPN performs well compared to other VPNs and we’re always working to improve speeds. If the connection speed becomes noticeably slower, please email us at support@disconnect.me.

What type of encryption does Disconnect use?

For all versions of the premium app, we use AES 256-bit encryption for the data. We also use 2048-bit DH for key exchange to support perfect forward secrecy (PFS).

Is my subscription auto-renewed?

Yes, subscriptions are auto-renewed. However, you can cancel at anytime from within the app (Settings > Account Details > Cancel plan), and we have a no-questions-asked refund policy for payments made during the current term (month or year, depending on type of subscription) in which a refund is requested.

How do I cancel my Disconnect subscription?

You can cancel anytime from within the app. All you have to do is open the app, go to Settings > Account Details > Cancel plan. You can also have our support team cancel for you by sending a request to support@disconnect.me.

General

Is Disconnect a VPN? What happens if I already have, or add, a VPN on my device?

Yes, the premium version and the blocking feature of our free desktop product utilize VPN technology. Because of this, if you already have a VPN, and you want the protections that Disconnect offers, we recommend uninstalling your other VPN and using Disconnect as your VPN. Having another VPN on your device can cause Disconnect to not be able to establish a VPN connection.

Do I need to leave the app open in order to be protected?

On Mac and Windows the app must be open and “On” to protect, but you can minimize the app. On iOS and Android, you do not need to keep the app open and running to be protected.

When I try to install Disconnect, it asks me for a password, but I don’t know the password. Why is it doing that?

Disconnect does not require a password. When you install from an app store you may be asked for the password that you use to unlock your device.

Protection/Blocking turns off periodically. Why?

This may happen when your device is switching networks or when your device is restarted. We’ve tried to minimize this as much as possible. If it’s happening, please email us at support@disconnect.me and we’ll help you troubleshoot.

I’ve installed, but the app is not connecting when doing the initial activation.

The first time you activate, it can sometimes take the app a few minutes to connect, especially if you have a poor signal from your Wi-Fi or cellular network. Please give it a few minutes and, if it does not come on, try again from a different and better network connection. If it still does not work, please email support@disconnect.me to let us know.

Protection/Blocking never turns ON. What should I do?

How do I update Disconnect?

On Mac, PC and Android you will see a notification telling you there is an update available and will direct you do where to download the update. On iOS, the app will auto-update. We’re working to offer auto-update on all platforms very soon. If you are concerned that you do not have the latest version of the app, you can always download the free app, which can be upgraded using your upgrade code, directly from our website or from the location indicated for your particular OS under the app’s Settings > Account Details > Add new device.

I’ve installed Disconnect and now I see a D in my browser’s toolbar. Why is this here?

With your app download, we include our Private Browsing extension (currently available for Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Opera) that automatically installs on your browser. The extension offers some features that the app doesn’t have (which we hope to include in the app soon) and works in tandem with the app to create the complete Disconnect experience. If you don’t see the D in your browser and would like the extension, you can always install it for free from our website. Our free browser extensions are only available for desktops and laptops; most smartphone and tablet browsers do not currently support browser extensions.

Do I need to search through the app in order for my searches to be anonymous?

Yes, but please note that our Private Search browser extension offers additional anonymous search options for desktops and laptops: https://disconnect.me/search. You can also search directly from https://search.disconnect.me.

Does Disconnect block all ads? Is it an adblocker?

No. Rather than block all advertisements, we only block the privacy-invasive ads that invisibly track you and may be responsible for distributing malware (malvertising) and other security threats. We also generally unblock ad tracking websites that commit to respect users’ Do Not Track (DNT) preferences and agree to comply with DNT as defined by the Electronic Frontier Foundation: https://www.eff.org/dnt-policy.

Do you log my activity?

No, we don't keep any personally identifiable activity logs, except payment information. Our privacy policy is here: https://disconnect.me/privacy

Does Disconnect prevent governments from seeing my Internet activity?

Disconnect focuses on preventing companies and cybercriminals from accessing your online activity, not governments. That said, by reducing the amount of information that companies know about your online activity, Disconnect does reduce the amount of information available to governments when these companies are served with government information requests.

How is Disconnect different from your Private Browsing extension?

Disconnect is a desktop application that incorporates most of the functionality currently available in our Private Browsing extension, plus a variety of other protections including a smart VPN, location control, and anonymous search. Some Private Browsing features are not available in the desktop application, including the ability to whitelist/blacklist a site and the blocking of social widgets from Google, Facebook, and Twitter. We’re planning to add these features into the desktop application in a future release. In the meantime, if you’re interested in any of these three features, we recommend using the Private Browsing extension as an adjunct to the desktop application. You can get the Private Browsing extension here: https://disconnect.me/disconnect.

What’s the difference between Disconnect and Disconnect Malvertising?

Unlike Disconnect Malvertising, Disconnect offers a full VPN that encrypts all of your online activity. It also offers additional protections that are not available in Disconnect Malvertising: real-time blocked tracker information, anonymous search directly from the app, our privacy icons functionality, and location control. Plus, Disconnect works across all of your devices keeping you protected.

What’s the difference between Disconnect and Secure Wireless?

Like Secure Wireless, Disconnect is a VPN, but it also offers additional protections: real-time blocked tracker information, anonymous search and privacy icons. Disconnect also protects you across all of your devices.

How do I uninstall Disconnect?

First off, we’re sorry to see you go! If you have a minute after following the instructions below, please tell us went wrong at support@disconnect.me. (We solve most problems right away, so maybe we can even get you to try Disconnect again.) Also, please note that uninstalling will not cancel your subscription. You can do that from within the app under Settings > Account Details > Cancel plan.


Disconnect Privacy Pro

Privacy Pro for Mac/iOS

What is Disconnect Privacy Pro?

Disconnect Privacy Pro app is our latest app for Mac and iOS. Privacy Pro offers protection from over 5000 trackers and suspected malware sites and works across your entire device or computer, protecting you on all browsers and apps! By blocking tracking and malicious sites, Privacy Pro also accelerates page load speeds by up to 44% and reduces bandwidth by up to 39%.

How does Disconnect Privacy Pro work, is it a VPN?

We use Virtual Private Network (VPN) technology to set a configuration profile that prevents trackers and hackers from accessing your Internet activity. Unlike full-fledged VPNs this product does not slow down your Internet, route your traffic through our servers, or mask your IP address.

Where can I get Disconnect Privacy Pro?

Is the cost a one-time fee or recurring?

The app is a one-time purchase that will cover multiple devices that use the same Apple ID or through Family Sharing.

How do I know Disconnect Privacy Pro is working?

On Macs, the shield icon in the Menu bar along the top of the screen will turn black. On iOS, in the app the shield will turn green with a locked icon and the letters VPN will appear at the top of the screen on the device.

What happens if I have, or add, a VPN on my device with Disconnect Privacy Pro installed?

On iOS devices, it will only work if it is installed after all of the other VPNs on your device. Put another way, if you have more than one VPN (or something similar to a VPN, like Disconnect Privacy Pro) installed on an iOS device, only the most recently installed “VPN” will work. On Macs, the app will not work if another VPN already has a connection established on the computer.

If I buy the Mac version or the iOS version, can I use the other version as well?

No. Purchasing the iOS version will only allow you to use the iOS version, and purchasing the Mac version will only give you access to the -Mac version.

What platforms does Disconnect Privacy Pro run on?

Our app requires iOS 9.1 or later and MacOS OS X 10.11 or later.

Is Disconnect Privacy Pro an adblocker?

No. We block invisible tracking of all types, some of which comes in the form of advertising.

When I try to install Disconnect Privacy Pro, it asks me for a password, but I don’t know the password. Why is it doing that?

Disconnect Privacy Pro does not require a special password. When you install from the App Store you may be asked for the password that you use to unlock your device or the password for your Apple account.

How is Disconnect Privacy Pro different from the Disconnect Premium app?

Disconnect Privacy Pro is not a full VPN like the paid version of our Premium app. Instead it is designed to protect you from trackers no matter what browser or app you are using without the addition of VPN encryption.


Other Products

Desktop Browser Extensions

Private Browsing

What is Disconnect Private Browsing?

Disconnect Private Browsing is a browser extension that stops major third parties from tracking the webpages you go to.

How do I use Disconnect Private Browsing?

Here’s a link to a product video and demo: https://disconnect.me/disconnect. Disconnect Private Browsing runs in the background and comes with sensible defaults, so you don’t have to do anything after installing. You can click the D icon in your toolbar to view, block, or unblock third-party requests or to otherwise change the defaults.

How does Disconnect Private Browsing work?

How is Disconnect Private Browsing different from the privacy mode in my browser?

Many of the popular browsers today have privacy modes. Chrome has “Incognito” while Firefox and Opera have “Private Windows”. While each is slightly different, they all do essentially the same thing: prevent the local browser application on your computer from saving your browsing history (meaning that other users of the same computer cannot see the browsing history). However, unlike Disconnect, Incognito Mode does not prevent Google servers (for example) from detecting and saving your browsing history, and does not prevent other websites you visit and third parties from tracking you. Another way of thinking about it: the browser privacy modes protect your privacy if someone gets access to your device, but they generally do nothing to keep the outside world from tracking you while you are using the device.

Where can I get Disconnect Private Browsing?

You can download Disconnect Private Browsing from our website here. Simply click on “Get Disconnect”, and you will be directed download the extension. You can also get Disconnect Private Browsing from your browser’s extension store. Unfortunately, Disconnect Private Browsing is not available through the Safari store, but you can still download it directly through our website.

How can I tell if Disconnect Private Browsing is working?

When you go to a web page, you will see a small counter next to the D icon in your toolbar. This counter shows you how many companies are attempting to track you on that specific site. If you’d like to see more details, simply click on the D icon and review the dropdown information.

Why does Disconnect Private Browsing contact disconnect.me servers?

Disconnect Private Browsing stays up to date by periodically downloading configuration files from disconnect.me. The configuration files determine which tracking sites can be filtered and whether experimental features can be enabled. Requests for the configuration files may include anonymous info about when you were last updated so we can optimize our infrastructure and the data we send you. As per our privacy policy, we never log your IP address or other personal info when our servers are contacted.

Which browsers does Disconnect Private Browsing support?

Disconnect Private Browsing is available for the modern versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari and Opera.

Why are some icons green and some icons grey?

We use color to indicate if a category is blocked or not. Green = blocked. Grey = not blocked. You can block and unblock categories by simply clicking on them.

Why are some boxes checked and other boxes unchecked?

Checked = blocked. Unchecked = unblocked. You can block and unblock specific trackers by checking and unchecking the boxes next to them.

Why does the browser give me an install warning that Disconnect Private Browsing needs access to my browsing data?

In order for us to block the trackers, we need to understand what your browser is doing (there is no other way unfortunately). We do not store this or any other browsing data.

I can’t find the D icon in my Safari browser toolbar; where did it go?

The D icon should be to the left of the address URL box at the top of the browser window. If it’s not there, you need to make sure that Disconnect Private Browsing is installed and enabled. On your menu bar, click Safari > Preferences > Extensions and look for “Disconnect” in the left hand column. If it’s not there, please re-install Disconnect Private Browsing. If Disconnect Private Browsing is installed but not enabled, please enable it. If it’s installed and enabled and the D icon is still not showing up in your toolbar, please email us and include the version of Safari you are using. You can find this by clicking Safari on your menu bar and then clicking About Safari.

I can’t find the D icon in my Firefox browser toolbar; where did it go?

The D icon should be to the right of the address URL box at the top of the browser window. If it’s not there, you need to make sure that Disconnect Private Browsing is installed and enabled. On your menu bar, click Tools > Add ons > Extensions and look for “Disconnect”. If it’s not there, please re-install Disconnect Private Browsing. If Disconnect Private Browsing is installed but not enabled, please enable it. If it’s installed and enabled and the D icon is still not showing up in your toolbar, please right click on your toolbar, hit “Customize,” and drag the D icon where you want it. If this still does not work, please email us.

I downloaded Disconnect Private Browsing for Safari and when I clicked on the file in my downloads folder, it disappeared. What now?

You need to make sure that Disconnect Private Browsing is installed and enabled. On your menu bar, click Safari > Preferences > Extensions and look for “Disconnect” in the left hand column. If it’s not there, please re-install Disconnect Private Browsing. If Disconnect Private Browsing is installed but not enabled, please enable it. If it’s installed and enabled and the D icon is still not showing up in your toolbar, please email us.

Why is the Content category grey?

By default, we do not block third parties that are critical to the delivery of content to a web page as blocking them could cause the webpage to “break”. However if you’d like to block content third parties on the site you’re visiting, simply click the Content category and it will flip to green, indicating that content third parties are being blocked.

What is the “Whitelist site” feature?

This feature gives you the ability to unblock all third parties on the site you are visiting with a single click. This can be especially handy if you ever notice that certain elements of a site are not functioning the way they normally do (these situations are rare, but we still wanted to allow for a single-click option if you need it).

What if I notice that something on the page is not working the way it’s supposed to?

If a web site is poorly designed, blocking a third party will sometimes “break” elements of the site. To fix a broken element, please open the extension and click “Whitelist”. This will unblock all third parties on the site you are visiting with a single click. You can turn blocking on for that site at any time by clicking “Blacklist”.

What is the “Visualize page” feature?

This feature allows you to see the third parties that Disconnect Private Browsing is blocking in a graphical format, add it is based on the Collusion initiative at Mozilla. This feature is currently only available on Chrome and Safari. You can also download Mozilla’s standalone Collusion product here.

Why is the Visualize page feature grayed out on Firefox?

We are working hard to add this feature to Firefox. If you’d like to be notified when it’s available, please sign up for our newsletter on our home page.

On the Visualize page, why are some circles red and others gray?

Red circles are known tracking sites; gray circles are either content sites or sites that are also owned by the site you are visiting.

On the Visualize page, why are some of the red circles crossed out and others not?

Red circles which are crossed out are blocked; plain red circles are unblocked. We block most trackers by default, and you can block and unblock them by clicking on the red circles.

What are the graphs at the bottom of the extension?

The graphs are meant to help quantify some of the additional value that Disconnect Private Browsing provides beyond just blocking trackers. The graphs currently display “0”s because the tool we use to measure these stats is in need of repair. The red graph is an estimation of the page load time saved because trackers were not able to load their elements on the page. The orange graph approximates the amount of bandwidth saved by blocking these trackers. The blue graph is a remnant of a previous feature called Secure Wi-Fi, and it will be removed shortly.

Will Disconnect Private Browsing work if I have multiple blocking extensions installed?

It depends on which browser you are using.

How do I update Disconnect Private Browsing?

Disconnect Private Browsing for Chrome, Firefox, and Opera will update automatically. Safari extensions take manual action to update. Choose the Preferences item on the Safari menu and then click the Extensions tab followed by the Updates item in the lower left corner. We recommend you check the Install Updates Automatically box to let your extensions update automatically from now on. If you’d rather do a one-time update, just click the Install button underneath the “Disconnect” heading.

Why am I still seeing ads after installing Disconnect Private Browsing?

Disconnect Private Browsing is not designed to be an ad blocker. It’s designed to stop companies, some of whom serve ads, from tracking your browser behavior. As a result, you will still see “first party” ads, meaning those ads that are presented to you directly from the site you are visiting.

I see the “Get Disconnect” button on your site, but nothing happens when I click. Why?

You may be on a browser that we do not support. Disconnect Private Browsing is available for the modern desktop versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari and Opera.

Why doesn’t Disconnect Private Browsing work on my mobile devices?

Mobile browsers do not currently support our extension. To protect yourself on smartphones and tablets, we recommend you install our Disconnect app for iOS and Android, which you can find on our home page.

Tracker Protection

To learn more about how we define tracking and the trackers we block and don’t block visit https://disconnect.me/trackerprotection.

Disconnect Search is the easiest way to search privately on Google, Bing, Yahoo, and other popular search engines. We designed it for people who like using popular search engines but who want more control over who has access to what they search for.

There’s not many things more personal than what you search for online, but your typical searches are anything but private. Most of the popular search engines save your search queries and connect them to your real name, your email address, or your IP address. These companies keep this information for months, sometimes years. In addition, when you click a search result link, the website usually receives the search terms you used, which can then be saved by that website as well. Finally, your ISP may be able to access your search queries and connect them to your account.

How does Disconnect Private Search work?

Disconnect Private Search protects your privacy in four ways:

You can also check out this educational video we made about how Private Search protects you here.

You can download Disconnect Private Search from our website here. Simply click on “Get Disconnect Search”, and you will be directed to download the extension. You can also get Disconnect Search from your browser’s extension store. Unfortunately Disconnect Private Search is not available through the Safari store, but you can still download it directly through our website here.

Disconnect private search is available via our browser extensions, mobile and desktop applications, or https://search.disconnect.me.

Do you save what I search for?

No, we do not log, save, or store any search information that could be associated with you.

How is Disconnect Private Search different from the privacy mode in my browser?

Many of the popular browsers today have privacy modes. Chrome has “Incognito”; Firefox and Opera have “Private Windows”. While each is slightly different, they all automatically delete your browsing and search history from your browser when you close the browser. However, unlike Disconnect Search, they do not do anything to prevent your search queries from being affiliated with your personal information, including your IP address.

Does Disconnect Private Search prevent governments from seeing what I search for?

You should not assume that any company or organization can prevent the governments from accessing your search queries, or most or even everything you do online. Disconnect Search focuses on preventing companies from accessing your searches.

However, Disconnect Search does reduce your digital footprint by offering the following protection:

What browsers does Disconnect Private Search support?

Disconnect Private Search is available for the modern versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Opera.

I see the “Get Disconnect Search” button on your site, but nothing happens when I click. Why?

You may be on a browser that we do not support. Disconnect Private Search is available for the modern desktop versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Opera.

Privacy Icons

What is Disconnect Privacy Icons?

Disconnect Privacy Icons is a browser extension that helps people easily understand the privacy policies of the websites that they search for and visit.

Why do I need Disconnect Privacy Icons?

Privacy policies are very complicated but legally important. Disconnect Privacy Icons can help you better understand how websites treat your personal data.

How does Disconnect Privacy Icons work?

Privacy Icons displays the key elements of website privacy policies in a series of icons and badges. These icons and badges are then presented in your search results when you search from the extension (as an overlay to your native search engine results) and while you browse (inside the extension). You can see detailed definitions for each of the icons and badges here: https://disconnect.me/icons/info

Where can I get Disconnect Privacy Icons?

You can download Disconnect Privacy Icons from our website here. Simply click on “Get Privacy Icons”, and you will be directed download the extension.

How do I use Disconnect Privacy Icons?

Once Disconnect Privacy Icons is installed, you can simply glance at the icons and badges on your search results and also while you browse. You can hover over the icons in the extension to see an explanation of what they mean, and you can search with the icons from within the extension itself.

How can I tell if Disconnect Privacy Icons is working?

You will see the icons and badges on your search results, and also in the extension itself while you browse. There extension will show up in your browser’s toolbar as a green circle icon with a white D inside of it.

Which browsers does Disconnect Privacy Icons support?

Disconnect Privacy Icons is available for the modern versions of Chrome, Firefox and Opera. Safari will be available soon.

Why does the browser give me an install warning that Disconnect Privacy Icons needs access to my browsing data?

In order for us to show you the icons and badges, we need to understand what you are searching for and where you are browsing. There is no other way unfortunately.

I see the “Get Disconnect Privacy Icons” button on your site, but nothing happens when I click. Why?

You may be using a browser that we do not support. Disconnect Privacy Icons is available for the modern versions of Chrome, Firefox, and Opera.

My site is TRUSTe certified; why aren’t all my privacy icons green?

Icon designation is based on criteria developed by Disconnect which is different from TRUSTe’s certification Program Requirements. TRUSTe’s Program Requirements require companies, amongst other things, to provide clear notice and choice around secondary use and collection of data, whereas Disconnect will only display the green icon for sites that clearly state they do not engage in secondary data usage practices, or do not allow third party tracking. TRUSTe’s certification program requirements are available at: http://www.truste.com/privacy-program-requirements/

My site’s privacy icons are gray; when will information be available?

We currently have information on over 5000 sites. Requests to add a privacy policy to the database can be made to privacydb@truste.com

The privacy information you have for my site is incorrect; what can I do?

Requests to have your privacy policy reviewed can be made to privacydb@truste.com

My website is TRUSTe certified; why does the icon indicate that it is not?

Disconnect gets up-to-date certification information from TRUSTe, but there may be a discrepancy in the database . If you send an email to privacydb@truste.com, TRUSTe will verify your current certification and update your certified status.

General

How do I disable or uninstall Disconnect Private Browsing, Private Search or Privacy Icons?

First off, we’re sad to see you go. If you have a minute after following the instructions below, please tell us went wrong at support@disconnect.me. (We solve most problems right away, so maybe we can even get you to try Disconnect again.)

Mobile Apps

Disconnect Malvertising

What is Disconnect Malvertising?

Disconnect Malvertising stops the biggest mobile trackers from collecting your info, blocks privacy and security invasive ads from more than 2,500 ad tracking services (both inside your apps and on your mobile browser), and protects you from thousands of suspected malware sites.

How does Disconnect Malvertising work?

Disconnect Malvertising installs a new network profile on your device which automatically blocks any attempts to track you from all of the companies on our filter list.

Where can I get Disconnect Malvertising?

You can find out how to download Disconnect Malvertising from our website here.

Do I need to leave the app open and running in order to be protected?

No. Once you’ve setup the app, and it says “Protected” on the home screen, you’re all set. You’ll be protected even if the app is closed, and even if you restart your device.

How do I know if Disconnect Malvertising is working?

The large circle in the center of the app’s home screen will show a closed lock with the word Protected. One or more of the Protection Pack icons on the bottom of the app’s home screen will appear in white, indicating which Pack is active. On Android, you’ll also see a key icon in your notification bar.

Why don’t I see a D icon in my mobile browser like with Disconnect’s browser extensions?

On desktop browsers, we install an extension and place a D icon in the upper right of the browser (or upper left on Safari). On iOS and Android, we download a standalone app to your device and, once configured, it works in the background to protect you. This means you’re protected no matter what browser you use on your mobile device.

What platforms does Disconnect Malvertising run on?

iOS 8.0 and higher and Android 4.0 and higher.

Is Disconnect Malvertising a VPN? What happens if I already have, or add, a VPN on my device.

Disconnect Malvertising works like a VPN, but it is not a full-fledged VPN.

Is Disconnect Malvertising an adblocker?

No. We block invisible tracking of all types, some of which comes in the form of advertising.

Does Disconnect Malvertising block all mobile ads?

No. Rather than block all advertisements, we only block the privacy-invasive ads that invisibly track you and may be responsible for distributing malware (malvertising) and other security threats. We also generally unblock ad tracking websites that commit to respect users’ Do Not Track (DNT) preferences and agree to comply with DNT as defined by the Electronic Frontier Foundation: https://www.eff.org/dnt-policy.

If your site is compliant with DNT and you’ve followed the EFF’s instructions (see above link), please contact us at support@disconnect.me, and we’ll review your site for whitelisting. Please note: we never receive compensation from any website we whitelist.

I paid for the Malvertising filter pack; does my payment cover all of my devices?

Yes it does.

When I try to install Disconnect Malvertising, it asks me for a password, but I don’t know the password. Why is it doing that?

Disconnect Malvertising does not require a password. When you install from an app store you may be asked for the password that you use to unlock your device.

Why do you show the key notification icon on Android?

Unfortunately, we don’t have any control over the key, as that’s an Android requirement.

I installed Disconnect Malvertising on my iOS device, but when I go to my phone’s VPN menu, I cannot connect to the Disconnect Malvertising configurations.

Although Disconnect Malvertising installs a VPN configuration, it does not mean you’ll be able to connect to the VPN. The VPN configuration is what allows us to block trackers/malvertising but it doesn’t actually add a VPN or route your traffic through a VPN connection.

I’ve installed, but it’s not connecting when doing the initial activation on Android.

The first time you activate, it can sometimes take the app a few minutes to connect, especially if you have a poor signal from your Wi-Fi or cellular network. Please give it a few minutes and, if it does not come on, try again from a different and better network connection. If it still does not work, please email support@disconnect.me to let us know.

I’ve installed the app on iOS, and the protection works on Wi-Fi but not cellular data (or vice versa).

You may need to activate the alternate profile. You can do this by visiting your iOS device's Settings > VPN > click Disconnect Malvertising (Alternative). If you still still cannot use the protection on both, please email support@disconnect.me.

Disconnect Private Search for Android

What is Disconnect Private Search for Android?

Disconnect Private Search for Android protects is a “narrow” VPN that masks your IP address, browser cookies, and other personal info whenever you’re searching so search engines and ISPs can’t track your searches.

How does Disconnect Private Search for Android keep my searches private?

Disconnect Private Search for Android protects your privacy in four ways:

You can also check out this educational video we made about how Private Search protects you here.

Where can I get Disconnect Private Search for Android?

You can download it from the Play Store: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=me.disconnect.search&hl=en

How can I tell if Disconnect Private Search for Android is working?

Your search results pages will have our icon in the upper left hand corner.

Do you save what I search for?

No, we do not log, save, or store any search information that could be associated with you.

Does Disconnect Private Search for Android prevent governments from seeing what I search for?

You should not assume that any company or organization can prevent governments from accessing your search queries, or anything else you do online. Private Search for Android focuses on preventing companies from accessing your searches. However, Disconnect Private Search for Android does reduce your digital footprint by offering the following protection:

Disconnect Kids for iOS

What is Disconnect Kids?

Disconnect Kids is the first iOS app that prevents your web-browsing history, in-app activity, location, and other info from ever leaving your iPhone or iPad.

How does Disconnect Kids work?

We created this short video to let you peek under the hood at how Disconnect Kids works.

Where can I get Disconnect Kids?

You can find out how to download Disconnect Kids from our website here. You can have a download link from us texted or emailed to your device.

How do I know if Disconnect Kids is working?

Once the app is installed, you will see a checked box next to the word “Protected!” on the app screen. This means that Disconnect Kids is working. To see which specific third parties are being blocked by Disconnect Kids, click the gear wheel Settings icon. If you’d like to unblock any of the third parties, just uncheck the box next to their name.

Will Disconnect Kids prevent my child from accessing any websites or apps?

No. Disconnect Kids does not have any impact on your child's ability to browse to a website, download an app, or use an app. It only blocks the invisible third parties that track users on web pages and within apps.

What platforms does Disconnect Kids run on?

iOS, for both iPhone and iPad.

Is Disconnect Kids a VPN? What happens if I have, or add, a VPN on my iPhone or iPad?

Disconnect works like a VPN, but it is not a full-fledged VPN. Importantly, it will only work if it is installed after all of the other VPNs on your device. Put another way, if you have more than one VPN (or something similar to a VPN, like Disconnect Kids) installed on an iPhone or iPad, only the most recently installed “VPN” will work.

I’ve installed Disconnect Kids but it says “Warning: Disconnect not Enabled”. What now?

Press the Tap to Protect button in the app to enable protection. On some devices, it can take up to 30 seconds to confirm that the app is enabled. If it does not activate within 30 seconds, turn on Airplane mode, then turn it off after 5 seconds and open Disconnect Kids again.

When I try to install Disconnect Kids, it asks me for a password, but I don’t know the password. Why is it doing that?

Disconnect does not require a password. When you install from an app store you may be asked for the password that you use to unlock your device.

How do I uninstall Disconnect Kids?

First off, we’re sorry to see you go! If you have a minute after following the instructions below, please tell us went wrong on at support@disconnect.me. (We solve most problems right away, so maybe we can even get you to try Disconnect Kids again.)

Secure Wireless for Android

How does Secure Wireless automatically detect insecure networks?

All new WiFi networks are considered insecure until you decide to whitelist them (mark them as trusted). In automatic mode, all cellular connections will be considered trusted because local threats are more limited on cellular connections.

Where can I get Secure Wireless?

You can find out how to download Secure Wireless from our website here. It is available for download through the Play Store.

Where are your servers located?

We currently have servers located in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan. We are actively adding new server locations.

Do you keep logs?

We only keep logs relating to how much data was used during a monthly cycle. As per our privacy policy, we do not store IP addresses, DNS lookups, sites/addresses accessed, or anything else.

What is the Private Browsing feature?

Private browsing helps keep your browsing private and secure by blocking known malware sites and tracking companies from communicating with your device to target you, store cookies, or fingerprint your browser. Although unlikely, some websites or apps may not work properly if they rely on loading a third party resource that’s being blocked. In this case, you can simply turn off Private Browsing and try the website/app again.

How can I tell if Private Browsing is working?

Generally, you can’t visually see the trackers that Secure Wireless blocks. Some of the trackers, like advertisements, may be noticeably absent while Private Browsing is enabled, but all other types of tracking are completely hidden. More technical users can validate that Private Browsing is working by using software like network traffic analyzers and comparing the results before and after Private Browsing is enabled. You’ll see fewer requests to known tracking servers.

What is the Whitelist feature?

You can manually specify which networks are already trusted and whitelist them. Trusted networks will not automatically trigger the VPN to connect when using the Automatic mode.

What is the difference between the three modes: Automatic, Manual, Always On?

Automatic mode interrogates each network change and connects to the VPN only if the Wi-Fi network isn’t trusted or if a user is connecting via 3G, 4G, or LTE. Manual mode allows the user to turn the VPN on and off on any network interface. Always On mode turns the VPN on regardless of network or interface.

What type of encryption does Secure Wireless use?

Secure Wireless uses AES-256 to encrypt data to or from your device. Secure Wireless also enforces Diffie-Hellman for key agreement/exchange which provides perfect forward secrecy (PFS).

Does Secure Wireless protect all network connections?

Yes. No matter if you are connected to the wifi at a coffee shop or your device’s data, you are protected.

Are my DNS requests leaked?

No. When using the Private Browsing feature, your DNS requests are routed through our servers to hide your IP address. Your ISP won’t see any of your DNS lookups.

How do I update Secure Wireless?

Secure Wireless will automatically update when there is a new system update available.

How do I disable Disconnect Secure Wireless?

If you don’t want Secure Wireless to automatically secure untrusted networks then you can change to the ‘Manual’ mode in settings. This will require you to manually start and stop the VPN.

How do I or uninstall Disconnect Secure Wireless?

First off, we’re sorry to see you go! If you have a minute after following the instructions below, please tell us went wrong at support@disconnect.me. (We solve most problems right away, so maybe we can even get you to try Disconnect Secure Wireless again.) It can be uninstalled just like any other app on your Android device.

Legacy Products

What are the Facebook, Google, and Twitter Disconnect extensions?

These are some of our earliest extensions, and each one is designed to block third party tracking by Facebook, Google and Twitter respectively.

Should I install Facebook, Google, or Twitter Disconnect in addition to the Disconnect Private Browsing?

Facebook Disconnect, Google Disconnect, and Twitter Disconnect are functional subsets of Disconnect Private Browsing (i.e., they do a portion of what the all-in-one Disconnect Private Browsing extension does). Therefore, you don’t need Facebook, Google, or Twitter Disconnect if you already have Disconnect Private Browsing.

What is Collusion?

Collusion for Chrome and Collusion for Safari are browser extensions that let you visualize and, optionally, block the invisible websites tracking you. Collusion for Chrome and Collusion for Safari are based on Collusion, a Firefox add-on by Mozilla.

Should I install Collusion in addition to Disconnect Private Browsing?

We suggest just using Disconnect Private Browsing as it offers greater protection and customization than Collusion. The major third parties that Disconnect Private Browsing filters are more likely to be privacy invading and to break pages, so Disconnect Private Browsing has an interface designed for convenient blocking and unblocking.

Why does Collusion contact disconnect.me servers?

Collusion stays up to date by periodically downloading configuration files from disconnect.me. The configuration files determine which tracking sites can be filtered and whether experimental features can be enabled. Requests for the configuration files may include anonymous info about when you were last updated so we can optimize our infrastructure and the data we send you. As per our privacy policy, we never log your IP address or other personal info when our servers are contacted.