Replace "Check by asking Google about each site I visit" with a more-frequent-update option

RESOLVED INVALID

Status

()

Toolkit
Safe Browsing
--
enhancement
RESOLVED INVALID
10 years ago
4 years ago

People

(Reporter: Jesse Ruderman, Unassigned)

Tracking

({privacy})

Trunk
privacy
Points:
---

Firefox Tracking Flags

(Not tracked)

Details

(Reporter)

Description

10 years ago
Currently, Firefox users have to choose between two anti-phishing modes:
(o) Check using a downloaded list of suspected sites
( ) Check by asking [Google  |v] about each site I visit

This introduces an unnecessary tradeoff between protection and privacy.  Instead, Firefox should have an option to check for updates to the list whenever the user visits a new hostname:

[x] Update the list of suspected sites whenever I visit a new site.

This would provide real-time protection with much less privacy impact: Google would only know that you visited a new site, not which site.  I think it would also put less burden on Google's servers and Google's developers.

Firefox should avoid requesting an update if it has been update in the last 2 minutes or so, in case a user is visiting a bunch of new sites at once.

(Another possibility is to let users choose the update frequency: 5 minutes, 10 minutes, 30 minutes, etc.  That would have even less privacy impact but would result in more requests to Google.)
OS: Mac OS X → All
Hardware: PC → All
I like this idea a lot, though I'm not sure how it plays with the SafeBrowsing Protocol's bandwidth throttling: dcamp, tony?

Comment 2

10 years ago
This is currently not a change that we're ok with.  This would increase the amount of qps that we need to handle on our servers.  From our perspective, we'd like to have control over how often the client requests the list.  This allows us to be able to plan our production resources and more effectively control our client traffic.  The new protocol specification allows the server to determine when the client returns for a new update, so we could always tweak that from the server side if we wanted the client list to be updated more regularly.
(Reporter)

Comment 3

10 years ago
> This would increase the amount of qps that we need to handle on our servers.

Can you explain why?  I'd expect this option to result in fewer queries than the current "ask Google about every site" option, since it would avoid making a query if it last updated within the last 2 minutes.
(In reply to comment #3)
> Can you explain why?  I'd expect this option to result in fewer queries than
> the current "ask Google about every site" option, since it would avoid making a
> query if it last updated within the last 2 minutes.

That option will be removed in Firefox 3, fwiw. Partially because of the QPS hit it causes on blacklist providers, partially because of the privacy concerns, but mostly because of our installed user base, only about 10,000 people are actually using it.

I thought there was already a bug on that, but can't seem to find it.
(In reply to comment #4)
> I thought there was already a bug on that, but can't seem to find it.

Bug 388652, where you asked Jesse to file this bug :)

Comment 6

10 years ago
(In reply to comment #3)
> > This would increase the amount of qps that we need to handle on our servers.
> 
> Can you explain why?  I'd expect this option to result in fewer queries than
> the current "ask Google about every site" option, since it would avoid making a
> query if it last updated within the last 2 minutes.
> 

As Mike pointed out, very few people actually discover and enable the "ask Google about every site" option.  The vast majority of users are on the regular mode, which does a lookup once every 30 minutes.  That's why this change would result in a higher amount of qps if the whole user base were to transition to that mode.
so is this a 'wontfix' now?

Comment 8

10 years ago
The option and functionality was removed from Firefox 3, which only checks a downloaded list of sites.

So this bug doesn't apply anymore, it's either WFM or INVALID.
Status: NEW → RESOLVED
Last Resolved: 10 years ago
Resolution: --- → INVALID
(In reply to comment #8)
> The option and functionality was removed from Firefox 3, which only checks a
> downloaded list of sites.
(...)

This is not fully correct (the second part of the sentence). It connects to Google if there is a match between partial hashes (calculated and downloaded earlier) and sends the matching hash, requesting it in full.
(Assignee)

Updated

4 years ago
Component: Phishing Protection → Phishing Protection
Product: Firefox → Toolkit
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