Starting today, Firefox users in the US can sign up to test Mozilla’s upcoming VPN (virtual private network) service, named the Firefox Private Network.
The service, currently in beta, was designed to work as an extension, separate from the main Firefox browser.
Also: VPN services: The ultimate guide to protecting your data on the internet
Any US user with a Firefox account can sign up on the Firefox Private Network website to test the extension. urrently, the extension only works with Firefox desktop versions, but it’s expected to be available for mobile users as well, once it leaves beta.
Just like any VPN, but from Mozilla …and Cloudflare
Firefox Private Network will work just like any other VPN service. It will encrypt and funnel all Firefox website connections through a collection of remote proxy servers, safeguarding the user’s traffic from third-party interception and anonymizing the user’s true location.
The proxy servers at the base of Firefox’s new VPN service will be provided by Cloudflare. “Their strong privacy controls limit what data they collect and how long they keep it,” Mozilla said.
Once installed, the extension will add a toggle on the Firefox toolbar for enabling or disabling the VPN feature.
Announced back in June
While in beta, access to the Firefox Private Network will be free for all testers. The service is expected to become Mozilla’s first commercial offering, said Mozilla CEO Chris Beard back in June.
Mozilla has been looking in recent years at different methods of diversifying its revenue stream, which primarily consists of the organization’s Google search deal.
As part of the efforts to expand its revenues, Mozilla ran a limited partnership last year with ProtonVPN, a provider of VPN software.
Selected Firefox users were able to purchase a ProtonVPN version for $10/month, under its normal market price at the time. The experiment ran only a few months, and Mozilla received a part of the revenue from the ProtonVPN subscriptions.