Sun. Jan 26th, 2020

Mozilla removed all Avast/AVG extensions due to illegal collection of users’ private data

2 min read

It is reported that when searching for Avast or AVG on the official website of Mozilla Add-ons, no results are returned. Even with these extensions, the store does not currently return Avast Online Security or SafePrice or AVG Online Security or SafePrice. Mozilla appears to have removed these extensions from its store. “Oops! We can’t find that page” error message when a user tries to open one of the store URLs with an Avast or AVG extension.

Wladimir Palant, creator of AdBlock Plus have analyzed these extensions as early as last year, and the analysis shows that AVAST directly collects back user browsing data. Obviously, as a protection extension, it is not necessary to pass back all the addresses browsed by the user, so the developer questioned that the extension collected far more data than needed. AVAST uses the collected data to accurately analyze which websites users visit, how often they visit, content on the website, and even accurately identify users. As for the specific purpose of collecting this data, it is certainly not just a security analysis. In the end, the developer found that AVAST intentionally collected the user’s private information.

The extension usage agreement released by AVAST has actually stated that the company will use ad networks for data cross-product marketing and trend analysis. In simple terms, AVAST is to collect data for advertising and marketing, but most users will definitely not look at the usage agreement carefully so they do not pay attention to this issue. For this reason, the Firefox browser has removed all extensions of the AVAST / AVG series. The solution is either that AVAST revises its privacy policy and extensions and no longer collects user data, or that it is permanently removed from Firefox. Although it is unclear what the final solution is, AVAST, the security software, has fallen in popularity in recent years and is no longer worthy of users’ trust.

Via: ghacks