Firefox 58 will take steps to make sure users of the browser are less likely to be followed around the web.
The world’s third most popular browser (according to Netmarketshare) will change how it does canvas fingerprinting. This feature allows websites to extract data that has been collected by browser.
This data includes software version, operating system, screen resolution and even the list of fonts installed on your PC.
These fingerprints allow your browser to be identified from anybody elses.
Firefox 58 will now ask users to opt-in to the collection of this data. Those that use the Tor browser (which built on the skeleton of Firefox) will know this has been a feature for years.
The firm has likely done this because while canvas fingerprinting is questionable it does provide useful information according to Mark Stockley at Sophos.
“It’s actually a fantastically useful feature, but just happens to be a very popular fingerprinting technique too,” Stockley explained in a blog post.
Firefox 58 is expected to be available in early 2018 according to Mozilla’s roadmap.