A recent study conducted by Spin.AI has revealed that a significant number of browser extensions used in enterprise environments pose security risks. These risks include data theft and compliance issues [2] [3]. The study focused on Chromium-based extensions across browsers like Chrome and Edge [3], and found that 51% of installed extensions were considered high risk [2] [3].


The study found that these high-risk extensions had the capability to capture sensitive data, run malicious JavaScript [2] [3], and send protected data to external parties [2] [3]. While productivity-related extensions were the most common [2] [3], browser extensions used in cloud software development environments were identified as the highest security risks [2] [3].

Furthermore, the study highlighted that organizations with over 2,000 employees had an average of 1,454 installed extensions [2] [3], with 35% of them presenting a high risk [2]. Of concern [2], there were 42,938 browser extensions with anonymous authors being used by organizations without considering potential security pitfalls [3].

Browsers can also acquire malicious qualities through automatic updates or when attackers infiltrate the supply chain [3]. To mitigate these risks [1], organizations are advised to establish and enforce policies based on third-party risk management frameworks [1] [2] [3]. It is crucial to continuously assess extensions for risks and consider implementing automated controls.

To minimize the security risks associated with browser extensions, it is recommended to evaluate extensions before installation based on permissions [3], developer reputation [3], and security audits [3]. Additionally, maintaining a real-time inventory of extensions and SaaS applications is crucial [1]. Organizations should also consider factors such as regular updates, user reviews [2], ratings [2], and a history of data breaches or security incidents [2].


The findings of this study highlight the significant security risks posed by browser extensions in enterprise environments. It is essential for organizations to take proactive measures to mitigate these risks. By establishing and enforcing policies [1] [2] [3], continuously assessing extensions, and implementing automated controls [1] [3], organizations can better protect sensitive data and ensure compliance. Additionally, evaluating extensions before installation and maintaining a real-time inventory of extensions and SaaS applications are crucial steps in maintaining a secure environment. Looking ahead, organizations should remain vigilant and consider the potential impacts of browser extension security risks in their future strategies and practices.


[1] https://betanews.com/2023/08/22/half-of-browser-extensions-pose-a-high-risk-to-business/
[2] https://www.darkreading.com/cloud/study-more-than-half-of-browser-extensions-pose-security-risks
[3] https://www.threatshub.org/blog/more-than-half-of-browser-extensions-pose-security-risks/