A reader on my article about the Google Chrome extension SpeedTest:

When I went to install SpeedTest by Ookla, I got this rather ominous message:

Add “Speedtest by Ookla”?

It can: Read and change all your data on the websites you visit

That scared me off. Do you understand just what it can do on websites? The message doesn’t have any details.

SpeedTest by Ookla allows you to easily check your connection speed from your Chrome browser. Learn more about it by clicking here.

Here’s what’s behind those permissions. In order to gauge the speed of your connection, SpeedTest has to read the speed of dating going to and from the site. It can’t do that without reading the data.  If you register for an account to save your test information, Ookla will also use that information to target ads to you on the Internet which is typical of all free apps and free email services like Gmail, Outlook, and Yahoo.

If you scroll down in the Chrome store, Google explains the permissions pretty clearly.

speedtest-permissions

 

Permissions:
Chrome will ask for permission to “Read and change all your data on the websites you visit”. Speedtest also measures how fast websites load with Web Speed, and it uses this permission to know how long it takes a given website to load. You can disable Web Speed in the extension settings.