Chrome and Firefox extensions stealing personal data without user’s permission


Recent research has found that some of the Chrome and Firefox extensions are stealing data without user’s permission. Looking forward to this severe issue, Chrome and Firefox users are advised to check their browser. 

According to an investigation by Washington Post, there is a total of 6 extensions have been found to be stealing personal data of the users. This list includes some of the most popular tools that have been used by millions of users worldwide. This list includes Hover Zoom, SpeakIt!, SuperZoom, Helper, FairShare Unlock and PanelMeasurement. All of these tools are available as an extension on Chrome with two among them on Firefox. Overall, the extensions had been installed over four million times worldwide.

Dubbed DataSpii by security researcher Sam Jadali, the platform collated data collected by the apps and extensions over a period of time. According to the reports, some of the extensions start gathering data just after getting installed on the browser while some of them waited for several weeks to begin, with the average being 24 days.

These extensions were using very clever technology to steal personal data of the users. Even Mozilla and Google researchers were unaware of this data mining. These extensions download all the JavaScript payload from Internet servers that included the data-collecting code which was then decoded to gather the essential information.

Jadali noted that these servers were linked back to analytics firm Nacho Analytics, which also had information on internal link data of major corporations such as Apple and Tesla.

All the extensions have now been removed from the Chrome and Firefox web stores, but users should still check to ensure their browsers are not at risk.

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