Always diligent about updating and improving on their software, Mozilla released Firefox 16 last week. However, within 24 hours of the initial browser release, the company pulled the new version offline after discovering a potentially harmful security flaw. Mozilla’s spokesperson informed the public that the issue is being fixed and that until the rerelease, Firefox version 15.0.1 is available and downgrading is the proper step for users affected by the security flaws.
[Image via TheDroidGuy]
The security flaw found in the latest version of Firefox leaves users and websites open to vulnerabilities by potentially allowing malicious to access URLs and URL parameters through the sites users have recently visited. While this security concern has not run amuck in the shady world of internet ill intent, Mozilla assures the public that they want to fix this concern before it ever becomes a problem. For now, they simply advise downgrading to the former version of Firefox, and taking other precautionary measures to avoid malicious websites, viruses, etc.
Mozilla released a patch for Android versions of the browser, which is available through Google Play.
Not the First Problem with Firefox
Anyone who has used any version of Firefox over the last few years has encountered, without a doubt, annoying and inconvenient problems from time to time. Technology is never perfect, even if most of us wish it were. However, Firefox remains one of the best browsers available, and Mozilla has proven their dedication to improvement time and again by gathering user feedback, testing their own software, and striving to correct any flaws right away. We applaud Mozilla for catching this security risk within hours of releasing the browser software and for pulling it from the internet so the issue could be fixed prior to pandemonium.
The folks at Mozilla did not waste any time. Firefox version 16 was back online and available for download a mere 24 hours after the serious security flaw was discovered. Michael Coates, director of security assurance, announced the rerelease, saying the new browser version is again available for download and installation, and that the security vulnerability had been patched and repaired successfully. Mozilla set and met their own deadline, ensuring there were few delays in giving the public access to Firefox 16.
Firefox vs. Other Browsers
Some people have a single browser on their computer or device, and then there are those of us who have the latest version of each popular browser available for use as we wish. Those of us with multi-browser experience know that not all browsers are created equally, although each certainly has its advantages. Aside from the fact that Firefox lacks and handful of features built into the newest versions of IE, Chrome, and other browsers, plugins can be installed, and there really is nothing another browser can do that Firefox 16 can’t. It is a good, clean, fast browser. In the end, the question of which browser is best is really up to the user, based on their needs and preferences.