To the privacy conscious Internet user, we are always finding ways to protect our identities and information as much as we can online. Although there are abundant browser extensions out there ready for us to download and add-on for extra privacy to our browsing, BolehVPN will dive into a couple browser extension features worth mentioning.
HTTPS Everywhere (Chrome, Firefox, Opera)
Major websites and services these days such as Facebook, Twitter and Google support SSL/TLS encryption and will automatically encrypt browsing using HTTPS and prevent man-in-the-middle attacks. These websites are evident by the small green security lock next to the website URL. However, there are still many websites, especially the smaller sites, do not run on HTTPS and still default to the insecure HTTP (‘S’ is for secure). The HTTPS Everywhere extension was created by the Electronic Frontier Foundation digital advocacy group to tackle this exact problem. After you install the extension, it forces your browser to connect via HTTPS whenever you visit a site that supports the encryption method. Download HTTPS Everywhere for your browsers from here.
Do Not Track Me (Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Opera, Safari)
Protect your web browsing from third-party tracking by using Abine’s Do Not Track Me extension to automatically block tracking companies which use methods such as ad networks, social networks and other data collection methods. The toolbar in Do Not Track Me will show the tracking cookies and scripts that have loaded on a site, whereby you are given the choice to disable them should you wish to. Installing this add-on in your browser keeps a running total in your web browser of the number of cookies blocked on each site. Download Do Not Track Me for your browsers from here.
Click&Clean (Chrome, Firefox)
This privacy extension offers a one-click erase for your browser cache, download and browsing history, temporary Internet files, cookies and flash cookies. The add-on permits you to automatically clear your data each time you close the browser, manually browse through your cache, and it also adds a “Forget this page” button to the context menu. The extension will even make available links to some of your browser’s more useful, if hidden features, like Chrome’s memory manager, experiments page, and more. Download Click&Clean for your browsers from here.
Source: Tech Norms
Privacy Badger (Chrome, Firefox)
Besides the earlier mentioned HTTPS Everywhere, another tool from the Electronic Frontier Foundation is Privacy Badger which blocks spying ads and invisible trackers. The extension seeks to destroy third-party cookies and other trackers that try to follow you across the web and collect what pages you look at on the web. If you are being tracked by an advertiser across several websites without permission, Privacy Badger will immediately block that advertiser from loading any more content on your browser. Download Privacy Badger for your browsers from here.
Source: Electronic Frontier Foundation
Close’n Forget (Firefox)
The Close’n Forget is a very simple add-on which closes the current tab you are on and make Firefox forget about the visit. The extension allows you to erase all cookies and history related to a specific tab. Although the add-on is said to suppress cookies relating to the page selected, the feature apparently only performs a partial clean-up of the browser history. The add-on’s author warns that sometimes cleaning up the history will only be partial, but for the most part it should do the job just fine. Download Close’n Forget for your Mozilla Firefox browser from here.
Netcraft (Chrome, Firefox, Opera)
Helping to protect from phishing attacks by blocking access to suspicious URLs, the success of Netcraft lies in its extensive community input of URLs involved in phishing in its “neighbourhood watch scheme”. Once the first recipients of a phishing mail have reported the target URL, it is blocked for Netcraft community members if they have subsequently opened the URL. Widely disseminated attacks simply means that the phishing attack will be reported and blocked sooner. In the anti-phishing community, it allows the empowerment of the most alert and expert members to defend everyone within the community against phishing attacks. Furthermore, the extension detects XSS attacks and prevents malicious popups from hiding where they originated. Download Netcraft for your browsers from here.
Source: Internet Explorer Gallery
There are of course many, many more add-ons and extensions available out there for you to download and install aimed at protecting your privacy. This is just the tip of the iceberg as far as browser extensions are concerned. However, do be advised that too many add-ons can actually slow down your browser! So which security add-on is your personal favourite? And which is the most useful add-on for you?
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