This has nothing to do with Firefox... Google is doing this.
I realize it looks like a problem with google and not with Firefox. But, it only occurs with Firefox 3 Beta 5. It didn't occur with Firefox 3 Beta 4, or with Firefox 22.214.171.124. So, could it really be the case that Google is doing this specifically when it detects that Firefox 3b5 is being used? Or perhaps it is due to a change in how Firefox 3 Beta 5 deals with Google's onclick method of redirection? Re-opening log hoping you agree... not trying to beat this into the ground, I just want to make sure it's not due to a Firefox change.
Also, it only occurs when you are logged into a google account.
It is important to note it only occurs when signed into your Google Account. At least it does with me and several others from here :: http://www.gamerswithjobs.com/node/38466 I am on Windows XP. Again, this doesn't happen with Internet Explorer. A combination of FireFox 3 Beta 5 + Google Account.
People are discussing it here as well: http://www.webhostingtalk.com/showthread.php?p=5042165 http://forums.digitalpoint.com/showthread.php?p=7218767
Maybe you're spoofing your referrer header, and Google interprets that as meaning you're not coming from the Google search results page when you load the search-result-click-tracking URL? Can you guys still reproduce after creating a fresh Firefox profile and logging into a Google account?
Good call. When I try a new profile it works fine...!
Are there changes I can make to my current default profile that will allow me to resolve the bug? Or should I just go with a new profile?
It would be great if you could figure out what in your profile triggers the bug. (I can't do that myself, since I don't see the bug at all.) One way to do that is to copy files one at a time into your new profile (while Firefox isn't running) and see when the bug reappears. That would help us figure out whether it's a Firefox bug, and if so, how to fix it.
Ah, I just deleted my old profile literally like 3 minutes ago out of frustration. Hopefully someone else in this thread can do that though!
Try clearing your Google cookies. I know that Google redirects you around based on the contents of those and I guess if they get corrupted it goes wonky.
I was unable to reproduce this on my XP computer, which had been using 3beta4 previously. I didn't clear any cookies. I closed 3beta4, installed 3beta5, launched it, went to google.com (I was logged into my google account from my previous session/cookie), and searched for digg, and was able to click on the first result without a redirect notice appearing.
I'm unable to reproduce this and I suspect that people who were (disproportionately SEO SEM folks, based on the blogs talking about it) had some Firefox add-on or pref setting that was causing this to happen. This isn't a phishing protection (the Firefox feature) issue as far as I can tell. Neither is it "major" severity. Most likely it's not even a Firefox bug and probably should belong to Google or some SEO-related extension author.
Okay, I'm marking this as closed/invalid. As mentioned above, perhaps it was a leftover Google cookie. Although it had been happening consistently at the time, I'm currently unable to reproduce it on the Vista computer in the initial description. Perhaps a cookie expired, or something was changed by Google. Thanks to everyone who helped look into this.