What you need to know
- Mozilla has announced a new privacy measure for Firefox called 'Total Cookie Protection'.
- It will store cookies generated whilst browsing in a "jar" that stops them from being shared with other websites.
Mozilla Firefox has announced a brand new privacy feature called 'Total Cookie Protection' that will stop cookies from being shared between websites whilst you browse on macOS.
Today we are pleased to announce Total Cookie Protection, a major privacy advance in Firefox built into ETP Strict Mode. Total Cookie Protection confines cookies to the site where they were created, which prevents tracking companies from using these cookies to track your browsing from site to site.
Our new feature, Total Cookie Protection, works by maintaining a separate "cookie jar" for each website you visit. Any time a website, or third-party content embedded in a website, deposits a cookie in your browser, that cookie is confined to the cookie jar assigned to that website, such that it is not allowed to be shared with any other website.
Mozilla says cookies are a "serious privacy vulnerability" because they are shared between websites, allowing for users to be tracked. Whilst Mozilla has already introduced measures to stop companies identified as trackers from seeing your cookies, this new feature goes one step further by preventing cookies from being shared across websites.
Furthermore, Total Cookie Protection can distinguish between cookies that aren't used for tracking purposes, for example, third-party login providers. Using a provider will give permission for cross-site cookies but specifically to the site you're currently visiting:
Only when Total Cookie Protection detects that you intend to use a provider, will it give that provider permission to use a cross-site cookie specifically for the site you're currently visiting. Such momentary exceptions allow for strong privacy protection without affecting your browsing experience.
Mozilla says the new feature, along with recently announced 'Supercookie Protections' will stop websites "tagging" your browser and eliminating the "most pervasive cross-site tracking technique."
The news comes as Apple branches out into its own war against tracking and anti-privacy measures. Much to the chagrin of Facebook it has recently introduced a new opt-in policy for IDFA tracking that Facebook says could destroy its advertising business. Mozilla has previously stated that Apple's changes are "a huge win for consumers".