Firefox has a new extension to prevent Facebook from snooping on you

Facebook's come under a lot of fire for its mishandling of user data, and rightfully so. Not too long after the FTC announced it had an ongoing investigation into the social network, Firefox is now introducing an official extension that's been created with the sole intent of making it more difficult for Facebook to track your online presence.

The Facebook Container Extension (opens in new tab) is available to use with Firefox now, and once it's installed, Facebook will be housed in its own "container" each time you visit it. You'll see blue lines around Facebook indicating that it's in a new container tab, but everything will still work as per usual.

Here's where things get interesting, though. Upon installing the extension, it'll automatically delete any of your Facebook cookies and log you out of your account. Clicking on a non-Facebook link while browsing Facebook will open it in a regular tab, and clicking on Facebook Share links in regular tabs will open them in the Facebook Container.

As great as this sounds, Mozilla does note a couple of quirks to keep an eye out for –

If you use your Facebook credentials to create an account or log in using your Facebook credentials, it may not work properly and you may not be able to login. Also, because you're logged into Facebook in the container tab, embedded Facebook comments and Like buttons in tabs outside the Facebook container tab will not work. This prevents Facebook from associating information about your activity on websites outside of Facebook to your Facebook identity. So it may look different than what you are used to seeing.

Last but not least, Mozilla says that the Facebook Container Extension doesn't allow it to see any of your data that it collects. The only thing it has access to is seeing the number of times you've added or removed the extension from your browser.

If you're a Firefox user, is this something you'll be using going forward?

Facebook never earned your trust and now we're all paying the price

Joe Maring

Joe Maring was a Senior Editor for Android Central between 2017 and 2021. You can reach him on Twitter at @JoeMaring1.

  • Correct me if I'm wrong, but accessing Facebook from a third party app should work just as well. Can't collect browser data if it isn't running in a browser. I'll install the extension anyway though, because why not?
  • Well, maybe I won't use it. For some reason I thought the extension would be available for the Android version of Firefox...
  • I'm not sure. I use Friendly though and have ad block so I don't how much it doesn't track and I don't how much the Ad Block on Samsung browser blocks.
  • So glad I never got a Facebook account (and I never will). It amazes me how outraged people get when it turns out an app/service whose primary purpose is to announce each and every detail of your life to the world, has been siphoning data in a not-so-public manner. It also amazes me how willingly people sacrifice privacy in exchange for an opportunity for self-promotion, without reading the fine print.
  • I think Facebook will be seen like kindergarten when the spotlight will move on Google. If we think it's scary Facebook has, imagine if you have an Android phone, what Google knows about you.
  • As I read this, something occurred to me. It sounds like Facebook is some sort of malware that we have to keep sandboxed from everything else. If that's the case, wouldn't it be better just to clean out the infection and be done with it? I mean, if we wouldn't tolerate this from some sort of software that was slipped onto our computers, why tolerate it from Facebook?
  • Installed on Desktop, hope they will release it for Android version of Firefox too.