PayPal won’t be blocking Safari after all


Breathe easy, folks. Remember this morning’s news about PayPal planning to block Apple’s Safari browser after deeming it as unsafe? Well, all that is water under the bridge now as PayPal has issued a statement saying otherwise. A company spokeswoman mentioned in an e-mail late Friday, “We have absolutely no intention of blocking current versions of any browsers, including Apple’s Safari, from our website.” That’s great, as you will be able to continue experiencing all the benefits of Safari while doing your online shopping through a multitude of sites that support PayPal instead of relying on just buggy Internet Explorer.

Apparently, a research paper released the week before by Michael Barrett, the firm’s chief information security officer, mentioned that the payment service would ban browsers that lacked a way to block known or suspected phishing sites, and didn’t support Extended Validation (EV) certificates, was what sparked off this piece of news and thankfully PayPal has responded soon enough. Safari is one browser that does not come with an anti-fraud blocker, and it also does not support EVs – a recently introduced digital certificate system that is meant to reassure consumers that the site has been vetted and is legitimate, leading people to speculate that this PayPal paper has also lumped Safari under the same roof as the mentioned Internet Explorer 3 from 1996 and Microsoft’s 1997’s IE4 as well.

Here’s a little bit of history lesson for the uninitiated – Apple currently supports only Safari 3.0 with security updates as well as various patches, and good to know that Safari 2.0 which shipped with Mac OS X 10.4 (aka Tiger) is still supported as well, unlike IE4 that came with Windows 98. PayPal’s revised criteria is “obsolete browsers on outdated or unsupported operating systems” will be blocked, which means IE5 is no go when 2010 rolls around while Safari 2.0 on Tiger will continue to receive support until Apple ships the successor to Mac OS X 10.5. Keep on shopping, guys!

Source: Computer World