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Mozilla Reverses Its Block on Privacy and Anti-Censorship Tools in Russia

If you’re tired of censorship and surveillance, subscribe to Reclaim The Net.

Firefox users in Russia can once again install several anti-censorship and pro-privacy extensions, after Mozilla told Reclaim The Net it has reversed its decision to block these add-ons. Previously, developers and users had reported that the extensions were unavailable, suspecting Mozilla, the developer of Firefox, was behind the block.

The extensions in question—Censor Tracker, Runet Censorship Bypass, Planet VPN, and FastProxy—had become unavailable in the Russian market. Initially, it was unclear whether Mozilla made the decision independently or in response to an order from authorities.

One developer from the team behind Censor Tracker had confirmed that the add-on had recently become unavailable in Russia but stated they were unsure why.

Comments on the developer’s post speculated that the decision might have been Mozilla’s.

As seen in Russia
As seen in the United States.

Russian users attempting to install the add-ons were met with the message, “unavailable in your region,” while these extensions remained accessible in other regions, including the US.

The initial decision and subsequent reversal have sparked discussions within the Firefox community about Mozilla’s guiding principles and their application in today’s regulatory environment.

Nonetheless, the reinstatement of these tools has been welcomed by those who continue to use Firefox for its dedication to privacy.

In a statement to Reclaim The Net, Mozilla announced that it was reversing its decision to block the tools.

“In alignment with our commitment to an open and accessible internet, Mozilla will reinstate previously restricted listings in Russia. Our initial decision to temporarily restrict these listings was made while we considered the regulatory environment in Russia and the potential risk to our community and staff,” the Mozilla spokesperson said. “Mozilla’s core principles emphasize the importance of an internet that is a global public resource, open and accessible to all. Users should be free to customize and enhance their online experience through add-ons without undue restrictions.”

If you’re tired of censorship and surveillance, subscribe to Reclaim The Net.

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