Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox users may have had their entire online history siphoned and stored by third-party developers.
That’s according to a prominent security researcher who found a popular plugin for the Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox was recording everything users did online.
The software, which is designed to allow users to customise the appearance of how webpages appear inside the web browsers, has been hijacked by spyware.
The extension, which has more than 1.8 million users worldwide, may have been recording the browsing history of everyone who uses it.
Worse still, this browsing data could be linked to details that make users identifiable in the real world, making them vulnerable to hackers and blackmailers.
An expert discovered that software is designed to allow users to customise the appearance of how web pages appear in Chrome and Firefoz, had been hijacked by spyware. The extension may have been recording the browsing history of everyone who uses it (pictured)
The finding was made by Robert Theaton, a software engineer from San Francisco, who discovered the software, dubbed Stylish, had been recording browser history since January 2017, when it was bought by new owners SimilarWeb.
Writing on his blog, Mr Theaton said: ‘It only takes one tracking request containing one session cookie to permanently associate a user account with a Stylish tracking identifier.
‘This means that Stylish and SimilarWeb still have all the data they need to connect a real-world identity to a browsing history, should they or a hacker choose to.’
Stylish sends complete browsing activity back to its servers, together with a unique identifier, he claims.
That includes actual Google search results from your browser window.