Mozilla announced that Firefox 69 on desktop and Android will, by default, empower all users by blocking third-party tracking cookies and cryptominers. Mozilla calls this a major step in their multi-year effort to bring stronger, usable, privacy protections to everyone using Firefox.
For today’s release, Enhanced Tracking Protection will automatically be turned on by default for all users worldwide as part of the ‘Standard’ setting in the Firefox browser and will block known “third-party tracking cookies” according to the Disconnect list.
Mozilla notes that they first enabled this default feature for new users in June of 2019. Mozilla also points out that over 20% of Firefox users have Enhanced Tracking Protection on. With this new release, they expect to provide protection for 100% of their users by default.
Enhanced Tracking Protection, Mozilla explains, works behind-the-scenes to keep a company from forming a profile of you based on their tracking of your browsing behavior across websites – often without your consent or knowledge. Those profiles and information may be sold for purposes that you never knew or intended.
How can you tell when Enhanced Tracking Protection is working? It is working when you visit a site and see a shield icon in the address bar.
In addition, Firefox 69 will protect users from cryptominers, who attempt to access the CPU of other people’s computers in order to generate cryptocurrency for themselves. The option to block cryptominers is included in the ‘Standard Mode’ of the Content Blocking preferences in Firefox 69.
I love when companies make an effort to protect the privacy of their users. It is a rare thing in today’s world, were so many websites and corporations feel that they are entitled to harvest as much data as they can grab. It is also good that Mozilla’s Firefox 69 will block cryptominers. It is wrong (and incredibly selfish) to sneakily access someone else’s computer for the purpose of cryptomining.