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What Is a Browser Extension?

by Geek Insider Staff
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The introduction of browser extensions enhanced online navigation and provided control and customizations on your browser. Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 4 was the first browser to introduce browser extensions, referring to them as “Explorer Bars.” Essentially, developers added the toolbars to the interface to influence browsing. Early in the aughts, developers learned how to create numerous extensions and add them to first-party web stores. Henceforth, extensions became popular that today, every browser supports them. 

What Is the Significance of Extensions?

The value that extensions add to your online navigation depends on the browser. Nonetheless, there is an array of things that you can do with extensions, from playing games to grammar checking your writing. Notably, some extensions extend the browser’s functionality while others seek to integrate a service with the browser. 

So, Are Extensions Safe to Use?

Despite the fun and relief that comes with extensions, you shouldn’t download extensions willy-nilly. Worry not if you’re downloading reviewed extensions from trusted companies. The main danger posed by browser extensions emanates from the automatic update feature. Hackers could use this provision to update a corrupted version of an extension and collect data without your knowledge.

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