Protect your tabs in Firefox with Don’t Touch My Tabs! (rel=noopener)

The Firefox add-on Don’t Touch My Tabs! (rel=noopener) provides the hyperlink attribute rel=noopener to all hyperlinks encountered in the net browser with the exception of same-domain hyperlinks.

The extension addresses a long-standing difficulty that impacts all fashionable internet browser: when a linked useful resource is opened in  anew tab, it will get management over the web page that it was loaded from.

That’s an issue, because it opens the door for manipulation, monitoring or malicious assaults. Visit the About rel=noopener web site and activate the primary hyperlink that claims “click on me..”. It opens a brand new web page in a brand new tab and whereas that in itself isn’t that thrilling, going again to the originating web page is as a result of it has been manipulated by that website.

Websites might add the rel=noopener attribute to hyperlinks to keep away from this. Most ought to, contemplating that management is handed over to the linked sources. These may do all types of issues, from altering kind subject locations to loading monitoring pixels or displaying commercial.

Sites might implement rel=noopener to guard customers and their very own information from such assaults or manipulations. The drawback is that this must be carried out by every website individually as browser makers have been reluctant to make the change. Mozilla did test rel=noopener for goal=”_blank” hyperlinks in 2018 however didn’t activate the change for customers of the browser. Check out the linked article for directions on enabling noopener for clean targets.

Note: The desire seems to have the identical impact because the Firefox add-on. It might require additional testing to be actually certain about that however a fast verify of a few websites means that it really works equally effectively.

When you verify exterior hyperlinks right here on Ghacks, you’ll discover that noopener is used for all of them.

noopener browser
Ghacks exterior hyperlinks

The Firefox add-on Don’t contact my tabs! (rel=noopener) steps in by enabling noopener sitewide for any hyperlink you encounter after set up of the extension. The solely exception to the rule applies to hyperlinks that time to the identical area (as the positioning in query already has full management over its personal pages).

The extension does the next, principally:

  1. Searches for hyperlinks on energetic pages and checks if they’ve the “goal=”_blank” attribute. For any discovered
    1. It provides the rel=noopener attribute if no rel attribute is used already.
    2. It provides noopener to the attribute if rel is already used leaving every other attributes untouched.

Breakage ought to be minimal and the extension works mechanically in the background as soon as it’s put in. The extension is open supply; you’ll be able to take a look at its GitHub webpage to take a look at its supply. Chrome customers can take a look at No Opener as an alternative which does the identical.

Now You: How do you deal with this in your browser?

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