The Web Of Trust (WOT) add-on was removed silently by the popular web browsers Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox soon after it was reported on German media that the add-on ‘Web Of Trust’ collects and sells the browsing history of users to third-parties, without even bothering to anonymize the user data.
Mozilla spokesman said,
“Mozilla removes browser extensions when we find that extensions violate our guidelines for add-ons. We received complaints about ‘Web of Trust’, which are related to how transparent the add-on works.”
WOT is one of the most trusted and popular add-ons used by millions of users worldwide to check the safety ratings of the websites. German news site recently reported that the add-on is malicious and can remotely execute the arbitrary commands on any web page browsed by the users including privileged browser pages.
While WOT hands over the users’ data in an anonymized form, it can be severely critical. As per the analysis reported by Rob, Security Technology student and AMO editor working on Firefox WebExtensions, WOT can also steal the banking credentials of the users besides installing a malware in their system.
Downloaded for more than 140 million times, the extension WOT collects and sells the information like user ID, web address, location, time and date. Among other things, data stored by WOT also include the travel details of users, sexual preferences as well as illness of users. This information is sold to the third parties, which is further sent to the interested marketing companies.
While browsers like Google Chrome, Opera and Firefox have already removed WOT from their stores, the Android app WOT Handyschutz is still available in the Play Store.
You can check out the entire analysis report here and learn more about it.