10 Firefox Extensions For Security + Anonymous Browsing

Looking for better tools to help you avoid hackers, viruses, government censorship, and other hazards on the internet? Here are my personal favorite Firefox extensions that I use for anonymous and secure browsing.

1. NoScript

Viruses and other malware often gain access to your computer via malicious scripts on a website you visit. NoScript allows you to disable scripts on all sites, except for ones that you trust. This blocks malicious code from installing viruses on your computer.

2. HTTPS Everywhere

HTTPS Everywhere is currently being used in Tor. HTTPS Everywhere automatically encrypts your connection to any websites that supports SSL. Using SSL makes it harder for hackers to access your data or for corrupt governments to censor content on sites.

3. BetterPrivacy

Some websites use Flash cookies (also called “LSO”), which are difficult to delete since most browsers’ cookie clearing functions don’t delete Flash cookies. BetterPrivacy can be set to automatically delete Flash cookies when the browser closes.

4. Adblock Plus

Adblock Plus is a free Firefox extension that will automatically block ads and tracker cookies on websites. For Adblock, I use EasyList for blocking ads and Fanboy’s Tracker List for blocking tracking scripts.

5. User Agent Switcher

When you browse a website, your browser identifies itself using a “user agent” that tells websites what browser you’re using. User Agent Switcher allows you to spoof your user agent, which can help you stay anonymous online.

6. anonymoX

A proxy is a service that allows you to browse the web without providing your IP address to the websites you browse. There are several Firefox extensions that give you access to proxies, especially fast and secure proxies. AnonymoX is the fastest and probably the most efficient proxy extension I’ve seen.

7. Lastpass Password Manager

Lastpass is an extremely secure password manager for Firefox. Lastpass stores your (heavily encrypted) passwords and autofills them into the appropriate website. This keeps your saved passwords safe from hackers. Lastpass does require you to log in, in order to decrypt the passwords.

8. Cookie Monster

Cookie Monster is a cookie management extension for Firefox. I use it to block cookies from all sites, then I manually unblock sites that I trust.

9. Quick Proxy

Quick Proxy is a proxy extension for Firefox. Unlike anonymoX, Quick Proxy requires you to use your own proxies (free public proxies can be found with a Google search). Quick Proxy is extremely lightweight and easy to use.

10. WOT – Safe Surfing

Web of Trust (WOT) helps you browse safely by simply warning you if the website you visit has been marked by other users as dangerous.

What's in My Browser: David Pierce

Post by David Pierce. Find me on Twitter.

This is the second in a series of posts, about what we all use in our browsers. They’re now where we spend most of our time, and everyone’s got it tweaked a little differently. Here’s mine.

After recently converting to Mac, I had a chance to completely refresh my computing habits. I didn’t install anything up-front, and only installed what I needed as I went along. That’s made my browser faster, leaner, and without some of the extra nonsense I didn’t really need anyway. Here’s how it looks now:

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What's in My Browser: Squealing Rat

logos(David’s note: We’re starting a new series here at the 2.0 Life, called “What’s in Your Browser?” The browser, it seems, is the new go-bag: everyone’s got it customized, right down to the nitty-gritty, to help them browse better, or faster, or more productively.

We all use browsers differently, and I get a kick out of seeing how other people have customized the “same” browser I use, sometimes to the point you can’t even tell it’s the same.

Our first submission comes from a regular contributor to The 2.0 Life, Squealing Rat.

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4 Firefox Extensions for Savvier Shopping

Post by David Pierce. Find me on Twitter.

Excited Shopping WomanGood economy, bad economy, we’re all still in the business of buying things. And let’s be honest: who buys things in stores anymore? The Web offers a ton of options for anything and everything you could want to buy, and offers great prices and discounts you might never find in a store.

But only if you know where to look.

I know I sure don’t know where to look – that’s why I’ve installed a few choice Firefox extensions that help me do everything from cross-check thousands of merchants to find me the best price, to poll my friends on whether or not I should buy that book I’m looking at on Amazon.

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8 Extensions That Will Keep You Stuck on Firefox

Post by David Pierce. Find me on Twitter.

ffx

I wrote a post a week or so ago over on MakeUseOf about Google Chrome that stirred up some serious controversy. Some people like Chrome, others thought it was totally blasphemous and crazy that I would ever even consider leaving the wonder that is Firefox.

And you know what? You’re all right. I’m using Chrome more and more, but have definitively discovered that I’m not leaving Firefox any time soon. And, as many of the comments said, there’s one reason for that: the extensions.

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3 Massively Time-Saving Firefox Extensions

Post by David Pierce. Find me on Twitter.

2870342415_9394ec6465Firefox as a browser isn’t necessarily that much better than anything else. Safari’s good, as are Opera and Chrome. What really makes Firefox shine, and sets it apart from the other browsers for the time being, is the extensions.

You’ve seen the iPhone commercials, where it’s like, “you want to find a great restaurant nearby? There’s an app for that.” Firefox is the same, but instead, there’s an extension for that.

Saving time doing annoyingly complicated things? Here are three Firefox extensions for that.

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An App for Better Reading, Online and Off

228203325_c4d3a376c8 In a world in which we’re constantly connected to each other and to the Web, there’s an in-flow of information unlike anything else in history. We’re constantly being bombarded with information, from a variety of different sources, and we don’t have time to deal with it all. But what if we want to?

Well, in that case, we might want to all become users of Read it Later, the Firefox extension/iPhone app powerhouse that makes reading on and off the Web a whole lot easier, and a whole lot more productive.

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Get Glue – It Will Stick To You

Post by Jeff Brunelle. Find him on Twitter.

book1In the past, when I liked something I would write the name of it down on a piece of paper. A movie, a book, a good bottle of wine – I didn’t want to forget the name or the reason I liked it so much.

Problem: I always lost the piece of paper I wrote it down on. Bigger problem: Who cared? The only person that was benefiting from that piece of paper was me, and I didn’t even have the will to keep track of it. Then I discovered Glue. Glue is the most useful online social network I’ve ever encountered.

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5 Apps for Taking Great Screenshots

Post by David Pierce. Find me on Twitter.

vista_screenshotThis post is part of the “Sunday Tips” series, in which I try and help you make the things you already do and use, better.

Screenshots (images of your computer screen at a given moment) are one of those things I find myself using far more often than I ever would have thought.

They’re great for showing applications I talk about here, they’re great for getting easier customer service for software; they’re even helpful for showing my friends how to do certain things on the computer.

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Sunday Tips: Google Chrome

google-chrome The beta tag is gone, the use of extensions seems to be imminent, and Google Chrome looks poised to become the next big thing on the Web-browser market. I’ve been using it for a while, and grow to like it more and more every time I discover something new and excellent that Chrome can do to make my browsing even better.

And there sure are a lot of things that fall into that category. Chrome does neat things with your history, your searching, your most visited pages, and a number of other parts of the browsing experience.

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