Do Not Track arrives in Opera 12
Support for the "Do Not Track" (DNT) header has arrived in version 12 of the Opera web browser along with other privacy and security-focused improvements. The DNT privacy setting is a developing standard being used to tell web sites that the browser user wishes to opt-out of online behavioural tracking. The setting is disabled by default to comply with current versions of the standard; users can activate the DNT option in the preferences dialog by selecting Preferences ➤ Advanced ➤ Security ➤ "Ask websites not to track me". Loading SSL secured pages (HTTPS) is also now said to be faster and, to further improve stability and security, the browser now runs plug-ins in their own separate process; this helps to limit the damage that some plug-in exploits can do.
Opera 12 also fixes a total of 5 security vulnerabilities (3 moderate severity, 2 low) that could be exploited by malicious users to conduct spoofing attacks or bypass security restrictions. These include cross site scripting (XSS) and code execution problems, cross-domain policy violations and two address field spoofing bugs.
On Mac OS X, the developers note that version 12 isn't available in the Mac App Store yet because of Apple's requirement to comply with operating system's sandboxing security technology. While a 12.x release that supports sandboxing has been completed, the team say that they have chosen to delay its release in the Mac App Store for undisclosed reasons. Instead, to fix the security holes, they have published version 11.65 to the App Store for the time being.
Non-security related changes include faster startup times, better extensions support, new theme options, and 64-bit support on Windows and Mac OS X. Experimental hardware acceleration and WebGL support, as well as support for web standards such as CSS3 Animations and Transitions, HTML5 Drag and Drop, and Web Real Time Communication (WebRTC), have also been added.
A full list of changes and new features in version 12 of Opera can be found in a post on the Opera blog, and in the Windows, Mac and UNIX change logs. Opera 12 can be downloaded for Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, FreeBSD and Solaris.