The Second Version

20/10/08

A Bad firefox Day

Today Firefox let me down, and it took quite while to fix the problem. In actual fact, the problem is with an add-on rather than the browser itself: NoScript 1.8.2.8, an add-on which allows to block Java and other scripts and the menace of cross-site scripting.

Today I needed to make an online purchase using my credit card, and problems began. I have a Mastercard with the additional protection of Mastercard SecureCode, which apparently requires information going back and forth between different website - Mastercard, my bank, some certification third party, and the merchant.

NoScript saw this as a possible cross-site scripting attempt and blocked it, causing authentication errors and the impossibility to complete the transaction.

That wasn't the only problem, because the merchant's site wasn't very springy (the Monday effect?), and of course I had forgotten my Securecode password; then I thought that there was something wrong with my card and spent ages trying, and finally succeeding, to talk to customer service operators.

Trying to add an exception in the NoScript rules for the involved websites did not work out, probably because a not well identified third-party site is involved, or because I don't know enough about NoScript rules yet. Normal online banking worked fine, however.

In any case, I deactivated NoScript, restarted Firefox and finally the transaction went through at the first attempt. I do not know if this problem can affect also the other verification schemes - Verified by Visa and VeriSign - but it seems only fair to warn other Internet users.

Now my NoScript is active again and cookies have been deleted...

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