Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Risk

7/17/2012
06:03 PM
Connect Directly
LinkedIn
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Firefox 14 Secures Google Search Queries

Security, interface, and gaming improvements debut in the latest version of Mozilla's Web browser.

Mozilla released Firefox 14 Tuesday, an updated version of its popular open-source browser that adds several security improvements and support for APIs that enhance Web gaming.

Firefox 14 comes just six weeks after the release of Firefox 13. In February 2011, responding to Google's release cycle for Chrome, Mozilla said it would shift to a rapid release cycle, distributing updates more often, with fewer new features.

The latest incarnation of Firefox brings a significant improvement in search security: Searches submitted through the Firefox location bar, search box, or the right-click menu will be sent to Google using a secure (HTTPS) connection.

"While Google users may expect Google to know what they are searching for, Firefox users may not be aware these search terms are often transmitted to sites they visit when they click on items in the search results," explained Mozilla lead privacy engineer Sid Stamm in a blog post in May. "Enabling HTTPS search helps sites like Google strip this information from the HTTP referrer string, putting the user better in control of when and to whom [his or her] interests are shared."

[ Learn more about Mozilla's mobile browser. Read Firefox For Android Reborn. ]

Mozilla's decision to support search security doesn't please some website operators, who fear the move will make publishers more dependent on Google: As a result of the change, Web publishers won't see the search keywords that attracted Firefox users in their website log files. To obtain that information, website owners will have to use Google Analytics.

Google has already implemented HTTPS search support in Chrome.

Firefox 14 also includes some user interface enhancements designed to communicate information about website security more effectively. For sites that support SSL encryption, Mozilla has restored the previously removed lock icon, now displayed to the left of URLs, along with the "https://" URL prefix. Websites with an EV (Extended Validation) Certificate display a green lock icon as well as the name of the website owner.

Another new security-oriented feature is that plug-ins can now be configured so that they only load after a click. In addition, Firefox 14 fixes 14 browser vulnerabilities.

To make games work better in Firefox, Mozilla has added support for the Pointer Lock API, formerly known as Mouse Lock, and support for native full-screen mode in OS X 10.7 (Lion). Pointer Lock helps keep mouse movements associated with an active browser-based game; without it, moving the mouse pointer past the browser boundary shifts the input device focus from the browser canvas to the underlying operating system, a potentially disruptive experience.

Firefox 14 is available for download, as always, for free.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
News
Former CISA Director Chris Krebs Discusses Risk Management & Threat Intel
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  2/23/2021
Edge-DRsplash-10-edge-articles
Security + Fraud Protection: Your One-Two Punch Against Cyberattacks
Joshua Goldfarb, Director of Product Management at F5,  2/23/2021
News
Cybercrime Groups More Prolific, Focus on Healthcare in 2020
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  2/22/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win an Amazon Gift Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: This comment is waiting for review by our moderators.
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
Building the SOC of the Future
Building the SOC of the Future
Digital transformation, cloud-focused attacks, and a worldwide pandemic. The past year has changed the way business works and the way security teams operate. There is no going back.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2021-25284
PUBLISHED: 2021-02-27
An issue was discovered in through SaltStack Salt before 3002.5. salt.modules.cmdmod can log credentials to the info or error log level.
CVE-2021-3144
PUBLISHED: 2021-02-27
In SaltStack Salt before 3002.5, eauth tokens can be used once after expiration. (They might be used to run command against the salt master or minions.)
CVE-2021-3148
PUBLISHED: 2021-02-27
An issue was discovered in SaltStack Salt before 3002.5. Sending crafted web requests to the Salt API can result in salt.utils.thin.gen_thin() command injection because of different handling of single versus double quotes. This is related to salt/utils/thin.py.
CVE-2021-3151
PUBLISHED: 2021-02-27
i-doit before 1.16.0 is affected by Stored Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) issues that could allow remote authenticated attackers to inject arbitrary web script or HTML via C__MONITORING__CONFIG__TITLE, SM2__C__MONITORING__CONFIG__TITLE, C__MONITORING__CONFIG__PATH, SM2__C__MONITORING__CONFIG__PATH, C__M...
CVE-2021-3197
PUBLISHED: 2021-02-27
An issue was discovered in SaltStack Salt before 3002.5. The salt-api's ssh client is vulnerable to a shell injection by including ProxyCommand in an argument, or via ssh_options provided in an API request.