Feeds

Firefox add-on does 'HTTPS Everywhere'

Well, everywhere possible

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

The Electronic Frontier Foundation and The Tor Project have teamed up to offer a Firefox add-on that beefs up https on several major websites, including Google.com, Wikipedia, Twitter, Facebook, and PayPal.

Currently in beta, HTTPS Everywhere is designed to make encryption easier to use on sites offering at least partial SSL support. Google, for instance, still defaults to unencrypted search, but the EFF's add-on automatically takes you to the https incarnation.

"Many sites on the web offer some limited support for encryption over HTTPS, but make it difficult to use," says the EFF. "For instance, they may default to unencrypted HTTP, or fill encrypted pages with links that go back to the unencrypted site. The HTTPS Everywhere extension fixes these problems by rewriting all requests to these sites to HTTPS."

The code behind the add-on is based in part on the Strict Transport Security (STS) response header put together by the NoScript project. "HTTPS Everywhere aims to have a simpler user experience than NoScript, and to support complex rewriting rules that allow services like Google Search and Wikipedia to be redirected to HTTPS without breaking anything."

Google rolled out an https version of its search engine late last month, announcing the move in the same blog post in which it admitted that its Street View cars had been collecting payload data from unsecured Wi-Fi networks across the planet. Normally, to use SSL-ed Google Search, you must specifically visit https://www.google.com (note the "s").

After installing the HTTPS Everywhere add-on, if you visit http://www.google.com (no "s"), you will automatically be taken to the SSL version. The same is true for sites such as Wikipedia, Twitter, Facebook, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Paypal, the privacy-minded search engine Ixquick, and, well, EFF and Tor. And once you're onto secure versions of these sites, the plug-in attempts to keep your traffic within these sites encrypted as you move from page to page.

You can also modify the add-on's rule-set to include additional sites not covered at install. You can download the add-on here. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Mathematica hits the Web
Wolfram embraces the cloud, promies private cloud cut of its number-cruncher
Mozilla shutters Labs, tells nobody it's been dead for five months
Staffer's blog reveals all as projects languish on GitHub
'People have forgotten just how late the first iPhone arrived ...'
Plus: 'Google's IDEALISM is an injudicious justification for inappropriate biz practices'
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 Healthkit gets a bug SO Apple KILLS it. That's real healthcare!
Not fit for purpose on day of launch, says Cupertino
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.