How Extensions Acts As Superpowers For Web Browsers
Browsers act as a gateway to the Internet. In addition to this function, they also have many other utilities thanks to the extensions. There is a wide variety of them and in this article, we will delve into how to install, manage, and remove them from our browser.
Extensions are a type of software that allows you to customize web browsers. There are different types of extensions depending on their functionality and the browser in which they are installed. In other words, the same extensions do not have to exist for one browser or another.
These functions include changing the appearance of the browser interface, blocking advertising or notifications, and even improving our security and privacy. Useful, right?
However, despite its many advantages, they are not without risks and we must be very careful with the ones we install. For example:
- An extension needs certain permissions to function. But what happens if those permissions cover more than the true purpose of the extension? It may be that, with malicious intent, our extension is trying to collect more data than it needs to function.
- On the other hand, extensions are automatically updated and this can be dangerous if, for example, it changes its owner. If the company or developer behind decides to carry out illicit actions, we could find a malicious update without realizing it.
As you will see, there are risks even in this small software. However, we should not be burdened. We simply must use common sense and follow the good practices that we recommend in our publications.
We show you as an example, several extensions designed to improve your security and privacy, available for various browsers:
Antibotnet Service: This is a free extension, provided by the OSI, to find out if any incident related to zombie computer networks or botnets has been identified from your Internet connection.
LastPass: it is a password manager that allows you to have controlled all the passwords of your different services. We just have to remember a master password and it can be synchronized for different devices.
Ghostery: This is a privacy extension that blocks website ads, trackers, and prevents them from collecting our data.
DuckDuckGo: The DuckDuckGo extension offers privacy when searching in browsers. For example, it avoids advertising tracking and does not collect personal data.
There are many more extensions that you can use, the important thing is that you inform yourself well about each one of them before installing them, reviewing who is the developer, user comments, requested permissions, update process, etc. In this way, you will minimize the risks. And remember all that extension that you no longer use, delete it from the browser.