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Mozilla Attributes Recaptcha Problem In Firefox To Google

Image Source: Sundry Photography / Shutterstock

Users using certain versions of Firefox are facing issues with captchas causing a spinning animation, preventing them from progressing. This difficulty can hinder access to websites and services, but there is a workaround available.

The problem is affecting all major Windows versions of Firefox supported by Mozilla, including the current stable version 125, development versions 126 and 127, and Firefox ESR 115.

Mozilla states that the problem is not caused by Firefox changes but is linked to Google. They provide the following evidence:

  • The problem affects both new and old Firefox installations, including Firefox ESR, Firefox Stable, and unsupported releases from the previous year.
  • By changing the user agent to Firefox for Linux or Chrome for Windows, the captcha issue can be resolved.
  • Changing Chrome’s user agent to Firefox for Windows also disrupts captchas in Chrome.

How to resolve the Firefox captcha problem

  1. Enter about:config in the Firefox address bar.
  2. Search for general.useragent.override.
  3. Change it to String and enable the add-icon.
  4. Copy and paste the string: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:125.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/125.0 into the field.
  5. Click on the edit icon next to the line to save the changes.

Now, Firefox will be recognized as Firefox for Linux, or you can use a different user agent like Chrome for Windows.

Note: You may want to delete the entry once the issue is resolved.

Final Notes

If Mozilla’s claim against Google is correct, it raises concerns about the impact. Google, a major competitor of Mozilla, has control over various popular Internet services like Google Search, Gmail, YouTube, and backend services such as recaptcha. Unintentional changes could have serious consequences for Firefox and other browsers not built on Chromium.

Image Source: Sundry Photography / Shutterstock

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