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I changed my settings but now my laptop is not recognized on many sites and I can't figure out how to change back.
For security, I changed some settings in the browser and started using Duck Duck go but then sites I need didnt recognize me and it has become very hard to access sites I need. I get a message that this device is not recognized. Its very frustrating. please help! I am not that knowlegable on settings.
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The search engine change can't give these kind of problems. You have probably changed the User-Agent string, a lot of web services rely on this information to identify a device as trusted other than cookies (which can be deleted or expire). If you don't know the previous User-Agent you could reset to default all browser settings, but if it doesn't work you have to confirm the browser again as trusted device in sites that asks for it.
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How do I do those two things? especially the confirm browser as a trusted device
To reset the settings to default follow this article .
Each web site has it's own implementation. For example Google knows you use Firefox on Windows 10 x64 only. If only a bit of this information is changed then it is not recognized trusted anymore. So you have to follow their instructions such as an SMS verification code or an email confirmation. Then the site will remember the new configuration and won't ask you again.
Do you remember what changes you did made in Firefox ?
Are you using permanent Private Browsing mode (Always use Private Browsing mode; Never Remember History) ?