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June 7, 2007

Firefox 3 Will Include Malware Protection

Mozilla intends to extend Firefox's phishing protection to include a list of sites that try to install malware. "Similar to how Firefox 2 blocks Web sites that are potentially going to try to steal your personal information, Firefox 3 will block Web sites that we believe are going to try to install malicious programs on your computer. Mozilla is coordinating with Google on this feature," says Alex Faaborg.

ComputerWorld quotes Gervase Markham, a developer for Bugzilla, who says: "What we are actually doing here is giving Google veto power over any Web page." The list of potentially harmful sites is managed by StopBadware, an organization that fights against spyware, malware, and deceptive adware. StopBadware is sponsored by Google, Lenovo and Sun.

Google already shows alerts if you try to visit a search result that may install malicious software on your computer. The feature is also included in Google Desktop, which automatically updates a list of suspicious or malicious sites from Google's servers. Firefox will probably work the same.

Other new features that will be included in Firefox 3: a unified way of storing bookmarks, history, and information about Web pages, microformat detection, private browsing, support for offline web applications. Firefox 3 should be launched at the end of the year, but you can still try the Alpha 5 version at your own risk.

{ The mockup is licensed as Creative Commons Share-Alike. }


  1. Sweet, Firefox 3 will block windows media player, then:
    "In addition, any software that doesn't uninstall cleanly is automatically badware."

  2. Read more carefully. It doesn't block the usage of existing programs. It just blocks the installation of certain programs through a website.

  3. No, actually it will not load a site if it's in a blacklist. The blacklist includes sites that try to install malware by exploiting flaws in the browser.

  4. Spyware Blaster or any good Hosts file will perform the blocking of such sites better than Google will. As of Spyware Blaster's 5/29 update, there are approx 2,115 blocked sites which install malware on FF, approx 6,930 blocked sites on IE and approx 971 blocked sites on Opera. There's an inherent conflict of interest in entrusting this job to a search engine whose business it is to lead you directly to such malware sites before the search engine can classify them as destructive. I'd stick with Spyware Blaster or a good Hosts file.

  5. I have firefox 3 alpha, how to i enable blocking. Is there a test page?

  6. I don't think the current Alpha is feature complete, so this feature hasn't been added yet.


  8. does that mean if we go to a site with this warning, we didn't get the virus, it just blocked the site?

  9. Personally, this warning drives me batty. I was trying to upload a doc to a very well known and safe site the other day, and the red screen kept coming up on every page and subpage of the domain. There needs to be a way to get rid of the warning per domain, because this error killed my productivity and I think Google and FF overtsep their bounds with them.


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