Thursday, July 21, 2016

Computer security alert


For those using the Opera Web browser, be advised that its long-term security may now be doubtful, to say the least.  Engadget reports:

After a $1.2 billion deal fell through, Opera has sold most of itself to a Chinese consortium for $600 million. The buyers, led by search and security firm Qihoo 360, are purchasing Opera's browser business, its privacy and performance apps, its tech licensing and, most importantly, its name.

. . .

Opera is the fifth most popular desktop browser with a meager 1.9 percent share, but it does hold a very respectable 10 percent of the mobile market. The company has been especially innovative in that arena, having introduced built-in ad-blocking, data and video compression and a built-in VPN.

There's more at the link.

Given the frequency of reports about Chinese hacking activities, I have little doubt that the 'Chinese consortium' that now owns Opera will come under irresistible state pressure to allow that country's agents to 'hack' the browser, ensuring that any and all 'interesting' data viewed using it will be leaked back to Chinese servers.  I use Opera myself occasionally, but in the interests of personal security that's got to stop.  I'm going to uninstall Opera and scrub its remnants from my system.  I can only recommend to my readers that they do likewise.

Peter

6 comments:

Richard Blaine said...

Ah, so many options.

Give your privacy to United States of Big Brother
Google Chrome - turn your information over to the evil empire
Explorer - turn your data over to the failing empire
Safari - give your data to the Social Justice League of Evil.
Firefox - yet another SoJust member of the League of Evil.

Give your privacy to the Chinese Peoples Republic of Big Brother
Opera.

Francis Turner said...

I'm more and more happy with brave as my browser of choice

www.brave.com

Founded by the guy that Firefox fired for supporting Prop 8 in CA amongst others

Bibliotheca Servare said...

Thanks for the recommendation! I've been looking for a better browser. Installed! :-)

MadMcAl said...

If you want all the comfort of the true Opera (12 and lower, before it became a downgraded chrome clone) and the safety of iron (meaning all the ups of chrome but no google taking the data) try Vivaldi.

https://vivaldi.com

It is from the original Opera developers, that where replaced with a polish team for Opera 15+.

Kell said...

Brave does a pretty good job, but please remember it's still in beta...that means they are still revising the build on a frequent basis and quashing major bugs and security flaws. I use it myself, but only for non-critical tasks.

If you have Windows 10 then Edge is reasonably secure. It sandboxes everything and the way Win10 handles updates means that it's going to be patched regularly. While I think Brave is a better browser, Edge might be a good choice for the interim while they work to move Brave into full production.

Jonathan H said...

I gave up on Opera years ago; I use Firefox or Iron but remember - everything you do online can be traced by someone. If you want anonymity use a dedicated computer and a free connection at a place you are not known to frequent, or do it offline.