An encrypted connection isn’t just important for spies and whistleblowers, or even when you’re doing online banking. It’s about ensuring your personal information and data is less vulnerable to hacking, no matter what website you’re on.
That’s why Firefox is now putting up a new protective screen, and is alerting users before they load a website with a private connection.
Personal information, like emails, private messages or medical information, is essentially being served up to attackers on a silver platter if the website you’re visiting does not offer an encrypted connection – in other words with just HTTP and not HTTPS.
And yet encrypted connections, recognised by the prefix https in the address line of your browser, are unfortunately not yet supported by many websites.
To highlight the danger of potentially insecure http connections, Firefox has added a new function that first tries to force https and then displays a warning message if no secure connection is available: HTTPS-only mode.
Once alerted, you can grant your permission to load the page anyway if you’re aware of the risk.
Until now, you had had to manually add such a feature in the form of an extension, for example “HTTPS Everywhere”.
Now you can simply activate it in the settings once the Firefox browser has been updated to the current version 83. By default, however, the new function is disabled.
The new mode not only allows strict on or off in the settings, but is also receptive to nuances: By clicking on the crossed-out lock symbol on the left in the address line, you can whitelist certain pages so they are excluded from “HTTPS-only mode”, either once or permanently. – dpa
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