Are Your Firefox Browser Plugins Vulnerable To Attack?

There are different levels of computer users –

The first level of computer user is known as the Luddite.

This is a person that hates technology and uses it for the bare minimum.

Then you have the category that most people fall into, the category of the average user.

This is a person who uses the computer on a daily basis but they do not care about how it works.

They do the very basic which includes email, social networks such as Facebook, and they listen to music.

These are the type of people who are the victims of most cyber attacks.

The last set of users is the advanced user.

There are different levels of advanced users but for the purpose of this article I will just focus on them being in one big group.

These are the people who customize the tools that they use on the computer.

They make sure that everything is working at an optimal level.

These types of people rarely get hit by a cyber attack because they know how to avoid them but sometimes even they can get caught in the spider web known as the internet.

Firefox

One of the ways that advanced users customize the software on their machine is to use plugins in a browser that is known as Firefox.

The way that Firefox is built allows you to create extensions that will allow you to make the browser do things that it was not originally intended to do.

This is a dream for the advanced user.

But that dream can quickly turn into a nightmare if someone decides that they are going to try to take advantage of the way that the browser is built.

There have been recent attacks on Firefox where black hat hackers are making fake plugins that are filled with malware.

This has always been a problem but it seems like the attacks are happening more and more recently.

Either the attacker is using an old abandoned plugin and claim that it is theirs or they create a fake one and claim that it does something which it does not.

Both ways, people are scammed into installing the plugin and they pay the cost.

Because these advanced users are used to looking for a different kind of attack they are made to feel foolish when someone catches them off guard.

Even if you are a so-called advanced user you must always have your guard up against a cyber attack.

People are coming up with new schemes everyday to be able to get malware into your system.

Black hat hackers do not care about your skill level when they try to attack you, all they care about is whether their attempt to sabotage your computer was successful.

If you are always on the lookout, even with something as trusted as the plugins for Firefox, then they will not be successful.

About Lee Munson

Lee's non-technical background allows him to write about internet security in a clear way that is understandable to both IT professionals and people just like you who need simple answers to your security questions.

Comments

  1. Well i use Firefox all the time an have a fair amount of plugins, i also like how a user can tweek Firefox, an i have tweeked it quite a bit.

    Of course plugins are a risk, i suspect they always will be, all a person has to do is be a little careful of the ones they d/l, when i find one i think i might like to use i go hunting for other users that might be using it an see if its good – if i find no one then i hesitate an hold off d/ling it for awhile

    • I think research is key here Dave – a couple of minutes on Google will give an indication of whether a plugin is safe before you install it.

      Alas, many people just install them without checking first :(

      • You are right Lee, just a little research generally does the trick.
        I really think as things go on more browsers will be more plugin friendly so there will be huge amounts of plugins available.
        Looks like many places are now using apps, all the SN sites are using them now which is a problem also. Facebook is a good or bad example of a site using apps.

        • For the most part, apps offer useful functionality for little or, typically, no cost.

          Most are totally safe to use but there are always a few rogues be it browser-related or social network-related.

          If anyone is going to add an app or plugin then there is really no excuse for not spending 20 seconds checking it out on Google, Yahoo, Bing, whatever.

          Is there?

Trackbacks

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Pahon Bogdan-Andrei, Lee. Lee said: Are Your Firefox Browser Plugins Vulnerable To Attack? http://bit.ly/9XgEKp […]

Speak Your Mind

*