Browser Terms Explained: Clickjacking

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Browser Terms Explained: Clickjacking

Get SigmaOS Free

It's free and super easy to set up

Browser Terms Explained: Clickjacking

Get SigmaOS Free

It's free and super easy to set up

Browser Terms Explained: Clickjacking

In the age of the internet, it is essential to understand the risks and threats that we face as users. One such threat is clickjacking, a technique used by hackers to deceive users into clicking on a button or link that is hidden or disguised. This article will provide a detailed overview of clickjacking, including how it works, its impact, and ways to protect yourself and your business from it.

Understanding Clickjacking

What is Clickjacking?

Clickjacking is a form of cyber attack in which the hacker manipulates a user's click by overlaying a disguised element, such as a button or link, on a legitimate web page. The user would then unknowingly click on the disguised element, which could trigger a malicious action such as installing malware, stealing information, or executing a transaction without the user's knowledge or consent.

Clickjacking is a serious threat to internet security, as it can be difficult to detect and can result in significant harm to individuals and organizations. It is important for users to be aware of the risks associated with clickjacking and to take steps to protect themselves against this type of attack.

How Clickjacking Works

The hacker can achieve clickjacking by using a technique known as "UI redressing" or "UI spoofing." This involves embedding the disguised element within an invisible or semi-transparent frame, which they place above the legitimate content. When the user clicks on what they think is the legitimate content, they are actually clicking on the invisible element and triggering the disguised action.

Clickjacking can be used to exploit vulnerabilities in web browsers and other software applications. For example, a hacker could use clickjacking to trick a user into downloading and installing malware, or to steal sensitive information such as login credentials or financial data.

Common Clickjacking Techniques

There are several methods that hackers use to conduct clickjacking attacks. One popular method is to create a fake "like" or "share" button on a social media page. When the user clicks the button, they are unknowingly promoting the hacker's content. Another common technique is to overlay a payment button on a legitimate e-commerce website, causing the user to make an unintended payment.

Clickjacking can also be used to hijack user sessions and gain unauthorized access to sensitive data. For example, a hacker could use clickjacking to trick a user into logging into a fake website that looks like a legitimate one, but is actually controlled by the hacker. Once the user has entered their login credentials, the hacker can use them to access the user's account and steal sensitive information.

Protecting against clickjacking requires a combination of user awareness and technical safeguards. Users should be cautious when clicking on links or buttons, especially if they appear to be out of place or unusual. Web developers can also implement security measures such as frame-busting code and content security policies to prevent clickjacking attacks.

The Impact of Clickjacking

Clickjacking is a type of cyber attack that involves tricking users into clicking on a disguised element on a web page. This can be accomplished through the use of transparent layers, hidden buttons, or other techniques that make it difficult for users to discern what they are actually clicking on.

Security Risks for Users

The security risks posed by clickjacking are significant. Unknowingly clicking on a disguised element can lead to the installation of malware, theft of sensitive information, or even financial loss. In some cases, clicking on a disguised element can also trigger the automatic download of malicious software onto the user's device.

For example, a user might click on what appears to be a harmless button on a web page, but in reality, the button is hidden over a malicious link that leads to a phishing site. The user might then unwittingly enter their login credentials, which are then stolen by the attacker and used for nefarious purposes.

Another potential risk of clickjacking is that it can be used to hijack the user's browser and carry out actions on their behalf without their knowledge or consent. This could include posting messages on social media, sending spam emails, or even carrying out financial transactions.

Potential Consequences for Businesses

Businesses that fall victim to clickjacking attacks could face consequences such as damage to reputation, loss of customer trust, financial loss, and legal liability. A clickjacking attack on an e-commerce site, for example, could result in transactions being carried out without the user's consent, leading to chargebacks and loss of revenue.

Furthermore, businesses that are found to be negligent in protecting their customers from clickjacking attacks could face legal action. This could include lawsuits from customers who have suffered financial losses as a result of a clickjacking attack, or regulatory fines for failing to comply with data protection regulations.

Notable Clickjacking Incidents

There are many examples of clickjacking attacks that have occurred over the years. In one notable incident, a hacker used clickjacking to create a fake "like" button on a YouTube video page. Users who clicked on the button were redirected to a page that prompted them to install a fake update for Adobe Flash Player, which contained malware.

In another incident, a clickjacking attack was used to steal Bitcoin from users of a popular cryptocurrency exchange. The attacker created a fake login page that was hidden over a legitimate login button on the exchange's website. When users entered their login credentials, the attacker was able to capture them and use them to steal Bitcoin from their accounts.

These incidents demonstrate the real-world impact of clickjacking and the need for businesses and individuals to take steps to protect themselves from this type of cyber attack.

Protecting Yourself from Clickjacking

Browser Security Settings

One way to protect yourself from clickjacking is to adjust your browser's security settings. Most modern browsers offer security features that can help protect against clickjacking attacks, such as enabling the X-Frame-Options header and disabling third-party cookies.

Using Security Extensions

Another way to protect yourself is to use browser extensions that offer additional security features such as script blocking, ad-blocking, and anti-clickjacking protection. Examples of such extensions include NoScript, AdBlock Plus, and ClickArmor.

Recognizing and Avoiding Clickjacking Attempts

Users can also protect themselves by learning to recognize and avoid clickjacking attempts. This includes being cautious when clicking on links or buttons on unfamiliar websites, never downloading software from untrusted sources, and keeping your browser and antivirus software up to date.

Web Developers and Clickjacking Prevention

Implementing Security Headers

Web developers can prevent clickjacking by implementing security headers such as X-Frame-Options and Content-Security-Policy. These headers can instruct the browser to deny access to the page from within an external frame, preventing clickjacking from occurring.

Employing Frame Busting Techniques

Another way to prevent clickjacking is by employing frame-busting techniques such as JavaScript. This involves adding code to the web page that detects if it is being loaded within a frame and redirects the user to the legitimate page if it is not.

Regularly Testing and Updating Web Applications

It is crucial for web developers to regularly test and update their applications for vulnerabilities and potential clickjacking risks. This includes updating all third-party plug-ins, checking for input validation errors, and conducting regular security audits.


Clickjacking is a serious threat to both individuals and businesses and requires proactive measures to prevent and protect against. As a user, it is essential to be vigilant and take steps to secure your browser and devices. Web developers must also take responsibility for securing their applications and implementing prevention techniques to protect users and their business reputation.