All Firefox users are now protected better against online tracking
Mozilla announced today that it is rolling out Total Cookie Protection to users worldwide and turning it on by default.
Total Cookie Protection can best be described as a sandbox for cookies. To better understand what it does, it is necessary to understand how cookies work without it.
When a user visits a website, the site, and any other site that has elements on the opened page, may place cookies and other data on the user's device. Some companies use these cookies to track users across websites and pages. The wider their reach is, the better their ability to track users.
Browsers included options to deal with cookies for a long time. Most allow users to block third-party cookies outright or delete cookies regularly. There are also extensions that help with cookies, such as Cookie AutoDelete.
Total Cookie Protection in Firefox
Total Cookie Protection in Firefox limits cookies to the websites they were created on. These cookies can't be accessed by other websites, which makes them for the use of tracking useless. In other words: cookies have only a limited use now in Firefox when it comes to tracking.
Firefox users had to enable the Total Cookie Protection feature manually up until now, using the Custom Enhanced Tracking Protection settings.
Mozilla is rolling out a change that adds Total Cookie Protection to Firefox's standard Tracking Protection mode. Enhanced Tracking Protection improves protection against online tracking through a variety of defensive tools.
The standard protection is the default, and it blocks social media trackers, cryptominers and fingerprinting scripts. Now, it is also blocking third-party cookies used for tracking users by default.
Note that the options is also enabled in Strict mode, and that users may configure it to be enabled in custom mode as well.
The change improves tracking protection in Firefox significantly. Previously, Firefox users had to enable the Total Cookie Protection feature manually in the browser to improve protection against cookie-based tracking.
Mozilla began prompting desktop users about the feature in May 2022 and launched it in Firefox for Android in November of the same year. Firefox did block a list of known tracking cookies at that point already.
Now that Total Cookie Protection is on by default in Firefox, Firefox users are better protected when it comes to cookie-based tracking. It is a good step in the right direction.
Those who want even more protections may want to check out Mullvad Browser, which is based on Tor, which itself is a modified Firefox ESR build.
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