5 Must Have Privacy Add-Ons for your Browser

Browsers are possibly the most vulnerable and information rich software on any internet users devices. Whenever hackers or even marketers attempt to breach your sensitive information, they can easily use website trackers & cookies to do so. Information that includes email, passwords, credit card data, bookmarks, browsing history etc. is readily available through your browser’s cookies. A Kaspersky Labs study identified that 48% of online attacks targeted mainly browsers during the first quarter of 2016.

Best Privacy Add-ons for Chrome, Firefox, and Opera

Although there are various tools including Internet Security Suites, VPN services, NAT Firewalls etc. that you can use to secure your devices. The browser still remains open to numerous hidden threats on app stores, streaming websites, and file sharing websites to name a few.
Even YouTube & Facebook run intrusive ads through your browser based on your cookies data. We have assorted a list of the most useful privacy add-ons available for browsers. You can download most using your Mozilla Firefox extensions webpage or the Google Chrome extensions store.

1. Bad Ad Johnny
2. HTTPS Everywhere
3. No Script
4. Ghostery
5. Privacy Badger

1. Bad Ad Johnny

bad-ad-johny
Bad Ad Johnny is a free web browser extension developed by industry legend PureVPN, a renowned name in the name of online security & privacy. Bad Ad Johnny effectively fights against malware and also blocks ads. Likewise, Bad Ad Johnny dodges trackers and offers high speed connection to users.

The feature that I loved most while reviewing the add-on was its speed. Google Chrome is an awful browser (most of you will agree), and the addition of an ad blocker makes it even poorer. With Bad Ad Johnny I noticed faster launch, faster page loading and speedy navigation.
Bad Ad Johnny can be easily installed and used on Google Chrome browser.

2. HTTPS Everywhere

https-everywhere
HTTPS-Everywhere is a web browser Add-on developed by the Electronic Frontier Foundation in collaboration with the TOR network so you can convert any “http” URL to “https”. The extension is available for Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox and Opera.

HTTPS-Everywhere secures online activities & communications by encrypting them using SSL technology and uses HTTPS rather than the unsecure HTTP layer.

3. No-Script

no-script-lite
No Script Suite Lite is another security extension that provides an extra layer of protection to users in their browsers. No Script won the “PC World – World Class Award” as one of the 100 best apps in 2006. No Script provides enhanced security against cross-site scripting, cross-zone DNS rebinding and CSRF router attacks, Click-jacking in addition to their Do Not Track feature.

This extension is available on Windows, Linux and Mac but can be installed only on Mozilla Firefox & all other Mozilla based browsers. No-Script Suite Lite allows JavaScript & other scripts to execute only on trusted domains. In addition users can add and remove their preferred websites from the No-Script white-list anytime.

4. Ghostery

ghostry
Ghostery is a privacy add-on used compatible with web browsers and monitors all web-servers being queried on websites and cross checks all requests for tracking scripts. The add-on is available on:

• Google Chrome,
• Opera,
• Mozilla Firefox, and
• Safari

I found Ghostery to be very useful from the start, everything apart from the “Ghost Rank” feature which actually does the opposite of securing your privacy and sends information to advertisers without your real identity though, always disable this feature in Ghostery settings.

5. Privacy Badger

privacy-badger

I saved my favorite add-on for last, Privacy Badger is brilliant browser security extension also developed by the Electronic Frontier Foundation to provide users online protection from third party trackers. This extension can be easily installed on leading web browsers including:

• Google Chrome
• Opera
• Mozilla Firefox

This extension blocks advertising trackers, cookies, Google analytics cookies, Facebook scripts and deep packet inspection tools by ISPs. I loved the fact that it doesn’t hinder browsing speed and browser performance so a must have extension.

Prominent Browser Vulnerabilities.

It’s an undeniable fact that your internet browsers are the door to the internet, but, remember the door is open at both ends. Web browsers use a range of tools such as Active X, Java, and Flash Player to perform different tasks. However, these tools also offer massive security flaws that are usually exploited by marketers, surveillance agencies and hackers alike to breach your devices.

During our research we found that the following in-browser features must be acted upon for secure browsing:

• ActiveX – must be deactivated
• JavaScript – Must be disabled since most malware initiate from here
• Cookies – Must be deleted, they contain too much information about you and your system

ActiveX is a privacy add-on that was compatible with Internet Explorer or Microsoft Edge. The add-on can provide a window to malicious websites on your computer hence ActiveX should be deactivated to not receive the window for harmful websites.

JavaScript is a programming language commonly used by hackers to infect your system through malware. By disabling JavaScript, you can improve your browsing experience as there will be no ads or pop-ups to bother you.

Cookies are always targeted by marketers because these are files saved by websites to store users’ personal information & visit history. After cleaning cookies, you actually removed massive collections of personal activities.

Always remember you can never have too much security online. Always consider my 5 step online security strategy:

1. Always have Internet Security software (ESET Smart Security, Kaspersky, Sophos, Panda Titanium , Trends Security)
2. Always consider using VPN for iron clad online privacy & data security
3. Use browser privacy add-ons to ensure scripts, malware and trackers are disabled
4. Use an Ad Blocker it is necessary to protect you from intrusive advertising
5. Avoid Google Chrome use Mozilla Firefox or another Mozilla build browser

Final Words

Online privacy is a controversial issue today with everyone including Google, ISPs, Microsoft, 3rd party marketers, hackers, NSA surveillance and cyber criminals looking to breach your personal data. It is always handy to have proactive protection ready even in your browser.
Have a go with our 5 must have privacy add-ons for browsers. Remember that no one but you should have access to and privileges to disseminate your online activities.

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