Sunday, June 2, 2013

YSK about Blank pages: What are they good for?

Few people know about Blank pages, and as the name says, that’s all they are, blank. They don’t have content, they don’t encoding, they have nothing. And that’s exactly the point.

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First of all, how can you access a blank page? Well, for offline mode, you can use “about:blank” (without the quotes) on Chrome and Firefox to get a blank page. If you want to get an online one, Google offers one, Apple offers one, and of course, there is Purple. But then again, what are they for?

To answer this, you have to look at the code of one (Inspect Element).

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See that the pages have only and HTML, Head, and Body tag. Each one closed immediately. But what happens when we enable extensions.

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What we found is that an extension or plugin is injecting extra code into the website, meaning that interacts directly with the browser without our consent. In that image, the extension injecting code is Turn off the lights, which is a trusted extension. But there are thousands of extension that inject malicious code and sometimes you realize after it’s too late.

With a blank page you can know IF a code is being injected, how bad is it, and where is coming from. There are also software that interact with sites as well, so be careful with what you install.

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