Firefox making the switch to default HTTPS Google search

Firefox making the switch to default HTTPS Google search

Summary: This will make Firefox the first major browser to use HTTPS search by default.

SHARE:
TOPICS: Browser, Google
12

Mozilla developers have switched Firefox's default search to Google's HTTPS encrypted search for the nightly developer trunk.

The change was announced on Mozilla's 'Bugzilla' channel.

While the nightly builds aren't used that much outside of the development community, this paves the way for the feature to be in the hands of end users in a few months.

Technically, this will use Google's SPDY protocol, which modifies the way HTTP requests and responses are sent.

The change to Firefox will see searches carried out in the following way all being diverted to Google's HTTPS search engine by default:

  1. The search bar on the right hand side of the navigation bar, where Google is the default search engine.
  2. The about:home page that is built into Firefox, which directs searches to Google.
  3. The "I'm feeling lucky" search that occurs if a user enters words into the location bar.

This is quite an important step because it will protect the millions of Firefox users from snooping by deep packet inspection (DPI) and search query leakage when users do a search and then visit a website.

When this change rolls out to consumers it will make Firefox the first major browser to use HTTPS search by default, protecting the privacy of users by default.

Image credit: Mozilla.

Related:

Topics: Browser, Google

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.

Talkback

12 comments
Log in or register to join the discussion
  • Confused???

    How does this help end users from Google tracking them?
    NoAxToGrind
    • more

      Now that it's secure, they can track even MORE info about you.
      bigjon-x64
    • Stops Piggyback

      This stops third parties from piggy backing off of a Google search (via deep packet inspection) without paying the Google license fee, which is what it's really all about.
      technojoe
  • Every move you make

    This is great. We can now be certain that Google is the only one spying on us.
    Robert Hahn
  • If I can't disable it or use ANY other search engine then I'll say Goodbye

    Ahh Houston, we have a problem! If I can only use Google to search - Then goodbye to FF. Google is way to damn nosy for my likes. I had better be able to use whatever search engine I want or as the song goes "Bye, Bye Baby Goodbye" to FF. I'll go back to IE.
    I've gone to extraordinary lengths to rid myself of ANYTHING Google and that's the way it'll stay.
    Anybody figure out a work around for this. I love FF BUT TRULY HATE GOOGLE TO THE nth DEGREE!!!!
    Disgruntled_MS_User
    • Nothing here says that

      Nothing here says you can't change the default search engine. Google is the default search engine for Firefox now, but you can change it. All this changes is that if Google is set as the default search for the search box, address bar, or home page, and you use it there, it will now use Google's SPDY secure protocol.

      If you have Bing! set in your search box, it won't suddenly start redirecting your searches to Google, nor if you have MSN set as your home page will it start redirecting searches there to Google.
      lonniemcclure
  • It's not about security!

    This is about SPDY! SPDY is about performance! It resolves rtt and parallelism issues in page load times within the framework of existing protocols. Duh. Also, Firefox is not the first. To test SPDY, something like 90% of Chrome searches are run this way. The rest are controls.
    tkejlboom
  • No! NO! Say it isn't so...Google?!

    I kicked everything 'Google' off my computer that is humanly possible to do. Good thing I'm not a developer, eh...
    OldGrayWolf
  • firefox

    hell no you can stick google where the sun don't shine and if you do this i will find a new one and it will not be firefox if they make google the main default they can kiss my butt
    ttx19
  • HTTPS-Everywhere

    Even better get the HTTPS-Everywhere Plug-in for Firefox and Chrome, to secure yourself up by default.

    More and more sites are offering the option, and in use it's transparent.

    https://www.eff.org/https-everywhere
    neil.postlethwaite
  • Bing?

    Why doesn't Bing have SSL?
    beowulf74
    • Why?

      Because M$ hasn't gotten around to copying it yet. Silly!
      mlashinsky@...