Mozilla continues to build more tracking protection for its Firefox internet browser. The company has revealed that it’s testing a new anti-tracking feature which will no longer allow websites to “fingerprint” users’ browsers and thus be able to track them even after they’re cleared their cookies. It’s also testing blocking cryptocurrency miners on websites.
The way fingerprinting works is by putting together several small details about the user’s system configuration. This can either be the operating system to the system font and the screen size. These data points can be used by tracking services to build a unique fingerprint for the user even if they have tracking disabled. It can then be used to track them across websites.
Firefox is now testing an anti-tracking protection in its browser which will no longer allow websites to do this. Apple also said at its WWDC event last year that it would bring anti-fingerprint tracking to Safari.
Hidden cryptocurrency scripts continue to be a problem online. Some websites hide mining scripts on their webpages which hijack the users’ PC resources to mine digital currencies as long as they’re on the website. Firefox will now enable users to explicitly block these crypto miners if they so desire. Both of these new features are currently available in Firefox’s Nightly and Beta builds in version 68 and 67 respectively. They are disabled by default and have to be enabled manually from the Preferences menu.