How To Add Firefox Security Extensions

November 5, 2010, By Christian Cawley

If you’re using Firefox, you should be aware of the various security tools that are available as extensions to this excellent browser. We’re going to take a look at installing two of them: Adblock and Flagfox

Block Adverts with Adblock for Firefox

There are few things on the web more irritating than adverts – ones that popup in the background or foreground, flashing animated adverts or worse, the type that appear within the browser windows itself overlaid (uninvited) over the website you’re visiting with a hidden “X” making it difficult to close.

Most browser ads can easily be blocked, however, thanks to some useful Firefox extensions.

Blocking an advert isn’t all about getting rid of the inconvenience of some dreadful flashing and needless sound and animation, however. You might have security concerns about tracking cookies, and these tools can be used to block these as well as customize the types of ads that are displayed.

To install Adblock Plus for Firefox, open you browser and go to Tools > Add-ons and on the Get Add-ons tab, search for “Adblock”. You might also go to addons.mozilla.org to download and install the tool; you will be required to restart Firefox after the item as been installed.

With Adblock Plus installed, you can expect to see a reduction in the number of adverts in your browser – but you can also go the extra mile and install the Adblock Plus Pop-up Addon and the Adblock Plus Element Hiding Helper for clocking text ads.

More Firefox Browser Security Tools

There is little in your online life more important than security. Whether this is email security, security from intrusion via instant messaging or peer to peer networking, it should never be ignored or discounted.

Most important for many of us however is the protection that is available to us in our browsers; there are websites out there that pose a particularly threat to anyone who visits them.

As such Flagfox is another great choice of Firefox extension for anyone wishing to be informed beforehand if the site they are visiting has the potential to pose any sort of threat. Rather than relying on a community effort and past history as with the similar tools provided by big security software companies like McAfee, however, Flagfox tells you the name of the country where a website originates.

Anyone aware of the threats from phishing and spoofed websites will understand how useful this is; while it isn’t going to be a means to instantly determine whether or not the website you’re visiting is safe, Flagfox can nevertheless help you to make an informed decision as to whether you wish to continue using the web page.

Installation of this very useful extension is via Tools > Add-ons – here search for “flagfox” (alternatively go to addons-mozilla.org) and use the Add to Firefox option.

Installation of this app must be completed by restarting Firefox – once you have done this, go and visit a popular webpage and wait for it to load. Once opened, check the browser Address bar – and you will see a flag representing the nation where the server originates!

This is a very useful extension for avoiding websites hosted in countries known to have links with online fraud; however it shouldn’t be used as a defence mechanism against phishing, spoofing and other threats of this nature.

Image courtesy of flod

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