Firefox 51 will warn you if you're about to enter a password on an unsecured site

firefox 55 adds webvr support
Kārlis Dambrāns/Flickr
Online security is a function of a wide range of technologies, from the security of your internet connection to the operating system you use to your chosen browser. And making sure that all of the resources under your control are safe isn’t enough — there’s also the safety of the web sites you’re visiting.

One of the key technologies aimed at ensuring a safe environment is visiting HTTPS-secured sites as often as possible. While that’s not always under your control, you can at least try to stay informed on whether or not a site uses encryption. The latest version of Mozilla’s Firefox browser, Firefox 51, makes it more clear than ever if you’re on a potentially unsafe web page.

In the past, Firefox simply added a green lock icon to designate sites that use HTTPS, with a neutral, or no lock icon, address bar used for sites without encryption. Keeping your eye out for that green icon was your only option when visiting sites that ask you to enter banking information, passwords, and other sensitive information.

mozilla firefox 51 encryption alert before
mozilla firefox 51 encryption alert before nonsecure

Firefox 51, however, will use a gray lock icon with a red slash to indicate non-HTTPS sites whenever a page askes for a password, giving you a more active means to identify potentially unsafe sites. If you click on the “I” icon for that site, you’ll be notified that the site is not secure and that your login information could be handed over to nefarious parties.

mozilla firefox 51 encryption alert after

Future versions of Firefox will be even more description, as Mozilla indicates on its security blog. At some point, users will start receiving notice of unsecure connections whenever they enter sensitive information such as usernames and passwords. Also, Firefox will eventually start displaying a crossed out gray lock icon on all sites that don’t use HTTPS, not just those that ask for passwords, and Mozilla plans to continue to encourage developers and web site owners to implement HTTPS.

While we users are ultimately responsible for ensuring that we’re only entering sensitive information in the right places, the companies that provide the tools we use can also lend us a hand. Mozilla is doing just that with its plans to both push the continued adoption of HTTPS and keep us informed when we’re on a site that isn’t encrypted.

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Robo sidekicks, AC for your bed, and more

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the Web this week. You can't buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Photography

8 easy ways for you to transfer photos from an Android phone to a PC

If you haven't already, you should back up your photos to a computer. Here's how to transfer photos from an Android phone to a PC using third-party services and a wealth of storage devices.
Mobile

Google tracks your location — even when you deny it permission

Google is tracking your location -- even when you tell it not to. According to an investigation by the Associated Press, Google services on both Android and iPhones store location data, regardless of whether privacy settings claim…
Mobile

Grab your fork and dig in: Android 9.0 Pie is now being served

It's time to dig in, as the new version of Android is here: Android 9.0 Pie. Is it worth getting excited about? You bet! Here are all the new features you'll want to try out in Android 9.0 Pie.
Computing

What's the best laptop? We've reviewed a lot of them -- and this is our answer

The best laptop should be one that checks all the boxes: Great battery life, beautiful design, and top-notch performance. The laptops we've chosen for our best laptops you can buy do all that — and throw in some extra features while…
Computing

Researchers hack John McAfee’s ‘unhackable’ Bitfi cryptocurrency wallet

Researchers have successfully hacked John McAfee's Bitfi cryptocurrency wallet. Researchers show that the device can be hacked, as they have gained access to the device's private keys and passphrase despite McAfee's security promotion.
Computing

Pricing and lack of content are still barriers against the adoption of VR

A recent survey questioned 595 VR and AR professionals about business growth in the consumer and enterprise markets. Only 24 percent report strong sales in the enterprise while 18 percent show strong sales in the consumer market.
Computing

Tired of choosing between Windows and Mac? Check out these Chromebooks instead

We've compiled a list of the best Chromebooks -- laptops that combine great battery life, comfortable keyboards, and the performance it takes to run Google's lightweight Chrome OS. From Samsung to Acer, these are the Chromebooks that really…
Emerging Tech

The world’s first practical quantum computer has cash and a timeline

The dream of building a practical quantum computer could be closer than ever, thanks to a $15 million grant from the National Science Foundation to seven universities around the United States.
Computing

Nvidia teases new GeForce RTX 2080 launch at Gamescom next week

Gamers will have something exciting to look forward to next week when Gamescom starts. Nvidia posted a teaser video to YouTube containing hints that it could use the venue to announce the new GeForce RTX 2080 graphics chip.
Computing

Nvidia introduces its eighth-generation ‘Turing’ design, but not in gaming cards

Nvidia revealed its new graphics chip design called “Turing” during SIGGRAPH 2018. Rumored to be the foundation of Nvidia’s next family of GeForce cards, the company instead showcased Turing in Quadro RTX-branded cards for pros.
Home Theater

HDMI 2.0b is a whole lot more than just a connection to your TV

HDMI 2.0b is the backbone for many of the latest updates in 4K UHD technology. And while a new cable standard can often involve a bunch of changes for consumers, that is not the case this time around.
Mobile

Want to watch Netflix in bed or browse the web? We have a tablet for everyone

There’s so much choice when shopping for a new tablet that it can be hard to pick the right one. From iPads to Android, these are our picks for the best tablets you can buy right now whatever your budget.
Deals

For work or for play, these are the 5 best laptop deals for college students

Whether you're getting ready for a new school year, shopping for a special student, or just need a new computer, we've got you covered: These are the five best laptop deals going right now, from discounted MacBooks to an on-the-go gaming…