Remove ability to override new tab page in private windows (about:privatebrowsing)

UNCONFIRMED
Unassigned

Status

()

Toolkit
WebExtensions: Frontend
P3
normal
UNCONFIRMED
6 months ago
2 months ago

People

(Reporter: Kestrel, Unassigned)

Tracking

(Blocks: 1 bug)

Firefox Tracking Flags

(Not tracked)

Details

(Whiteboard: triaged)

(Reporter)

Description

6 months ago
The user may want a custom new tab page in private windows which would require overriding about:privatebrowsing. Chrome allows extensions that override the new tab page to work in incognito windows.
(Reporter)

Updated

6 months ago
Blocks: 1161828
Depends on: 1234150

Updated

6 months ago
Whiteboard: [private, new tab] design-decision-needed

Comment 1

6 months ago
Adding Javaun, as guidance around this would be needed. Third-party overrides would potentially allow info leaks and tracking in PBM, so we'd need to flesh this out from a Private Browsing PoV first.
Flags: needinfo?(jmoradi)

Comment 2

5 months ago
This has landed in bug 1234150 and currently this works in private browsing mode as well as normal mode by allowing you to override the new tab page.

I'm confused by comment 0 which contradicts the documentation "New Tab pages cannot be overridden in incognito windows" 

https://developer.chrome.com/extensions/override

Should we be restricting this in private browsing?
Flags: needinfo?(kev)

Comment 3

5 months ago
Per comment #1, looking for guidance from private browsing product.

My vote is yes. Custom newtabs can leak info to orgs other than mozilla. Users should be required to specifically enable an addon in private browsing mode to effect the changes they make.
Flags: needinfo?(kev)

Comment 4

5 months ago
(In reply to Kev Needham [:kev] from comment #3)
> My vote is yes. Custom newtabs can leak info to orgs other than mozilla.
> Users should be required to specifically enable an addon in private browsing
> mode to effect the changes they make.

And, to be clear, our newtab does not, iirc, leak info by default, where other newtabs can (and frequently do) load resources from third party sites.

Comment 5

5 months ago
Changing bug title to be clearer that we are planning on removing this ability. This ability was added in Firefox 53, so we'll need to land this patch soon to remove it - based on Javaun's feedback.
Summary: Ability to override new tab page in private windows (about:privatebrowsing) → Remove ability to override new tab page in private windows (about:privatebrowsing)

Updated

2 months ago
Priority: -- → P3
Whiteboard: [private, new tab] design-decision-needed → triaged
Clearing my NI (sorry it took so long) and adding Pdol, who is product owner for PBM
Flags: needinfo?(jmoradi) → needinfo?(pdolanjski)
(In reply to Andy McKay [:andym] from comment #5)
> Changing bug title to be clearer that we are planning on removing this
> ability. This ability was added in Firefox 53, so we'll need to land this
> patch soon to remove it - based on Javaun's feedback.

This seems like the right approach to me given the risk of newtab leaking info, unbeknownst to the user.
Flags: needinfo?(pdolanjski)
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