updated 11:25 am EDT, Fri April 18, 2008
PayPal blocked in Safari?
Users of Apple's Safari web browser may be blocked from making PayPal transactions in the future, according to a white paper from the latter company. While the company has already taken Safari to task for lacking specific anti-phishing protection, or EV SSL (Extended Validation Secure Sockets Layer) certificates, PayPal's CIS officer now argues that the threat of phishing may be too great to allow users to send money through "unsafe" web browsers. "In our view," writes Michael Barrett, "letting users view the PayPal site on one of these browsers is equal to a car manufacturer allowing drivers to buy one of their vehicles without seat belts."
"At PayPal, we are in the process of reimplementing controls which will first warn our customers when logging in to PayPal of those browsers that we consider unsafe," Barrett continues. "Later, we plan on blocking customers from accessing the site from the most unsafe -- usually the oldest -- browsers."
The focus of this effort is said to be on older versions of Internet Explorer no longer supported by Microsoft, but does not exclude other types of unsecured software. At present neither Firefox nor Opera support EV SSL, but the companies behind both have already announced development plans in that regard. To date, Apple has not revealed any intention to add the technology to Safari.