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I am getting an "insecure connection" message on every search engine, how do I fix this?

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I just updated Windows and Malwarebytes, and it reset everything. Now Firefox will load, but I can't search for anything. I can't even get to my email because it reset all of my bookmarks. All of the search engines have the "insecure connection" message, and I am pretty sure that most of them are secure. I have tried Google, Yahoo, and Duck Duck Go, and none of them will work. How do I fix this?

I just updated Windows and Malwarebytes, and it reset everything. Now Firefox will load, but I can't search for anything. I can't even get to my email because it reset all of my bookmarks. All of the search engines have the "insecure connection" message, and I am pretty sure that most of them are secure. I have tried Google, Yahoo, and Duck Duck Go, and none of them will work. How do I fix this?

Additional System Details

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  • User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; Win64; x64; rv:56.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/56.0

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jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
8792 solutions 71899 answers

The "Your connection is not secure" page generally has an "Advanced" button to get more technical information about the source of the problem. In particular there should be an ALL_CAPS_CODE. Do either of the following articles help you track down the source of the issue:

The "Your connection is not secure" page generally has an "Advanced" button to get more technical information about the source of the problem. In particular there should be an ALL_CAPS_CODE. Do either of the following articles help you track down the source of the issue: * [[What does "Your connection is not secure" mean?]] * [[How to troubleshoot the error code "SEC_ERROR_UNKNOWN_ISSUER" on secure websites]]

Question owner

I was able to add an exception on one, but I am not even getting the option to do that now. I also have Covenant Eyes filtering, which I think may be part of the problem.

I was able to add an exception on one, but I am not even getting the option to do that now. I also have Covenant Eyes filtering, which I think may be part of the problem.
jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
8792 solutions 71899 answers

Hmm, yes, exceptions are not going to be a successful strategy.

To set Firefox to trust a filter, usually there are two options:

(1) Follow the instructions of the filter provider on how to set up Firefox

(2) Find the certificate that the filter uses to sign the "fake" certificates it presents for secure websites and import that certificate into Firefox as a trusted authority

BUT -- before going into that in more detail, have you restarted Windows since this problem occurred? There are cases where Firefox starts up with incomplete permissions after a Windows update and you lose access to data that is still there. So I suggest doing a normal system shutdown and startup to release any file locks and complete any pending updates.

If your data does not magically reappear, the most likely scenarios for complete data loss are:

(1) A Refresh started but the migration of data from your old profile to your new profile was incomplete, or
(2) Your old profile was locked, so Firefox ignored it and created a new one.

Here's how to investigate those two possibilities:

Did Firefox perform a Refresh?

Unless it was interrupted in progress, you should find a folder on your desktop named Old Firefox Data. Inside would be a semi-randomly-named folder with freshly updated files. Do you see anything like that?

If so, we'll suggest how to rescue key files or completely restore the earlier profile folder.

If not...

Does the Profile Manager list your immediately previous profile folder?

To check on that, inside Firefox, type or paste about:profiles in the address bar and press Enter/Return to load it.

This page should list all the profiles Firefox is currently aware of. If you see a profile that is not currently set as default that looks promising, scroll down to it and click the Set as default profile button below that profile, then scroll back up and click the Restart normally button. (There are some other buttons, but I think those are still "under construction" so please ignore them.)

Firefox should exit and then start up using the other profile. Is that the right one?

If it's not there...

Did Firefox orphan your old profile folder?

Here's how to check whether there are additional profile folders in the standard location in addition to the one you're using. Start by opening your current Firefox profile folder using either:

* "3-bar" menu button > "?" button > Troubleshooting Information
* (menu bar) Help > Troubleshooting Information
* type or paste about:support in the address bar and press Enter/Return

In the first table on the page, click the "Open Folder" button, to launch a new window listing various files and folders in Windows Explorer.

In the Windows Explorer address bar, click the capitalized word Profiles to move up one level in the folder hierarchy. More than one folder here by any chance? Do the files in those folders look like they were last updated around the time of the update?

If you've got any promising looking folders, we can discuss next steps to recover use of them, or at least your bookmarks.

Hmm, yes, exceptions are not going to be a successful strategy. To set Firefox to trust a filter, usually there are two options: (1) Follow the instructions of the filter provider on how to set up Firefox (2) Find the certificate that the filter uses to sign the "fake" certificates it presents for secure websites and import that certificate into Firefox as a trusted authority BUT -- before going into that in more detail, have you restarted Windows since this problem occurred? There are cases where Firefox starts up with incomplete permissions after a Windows update and you lose access to data that is still there. So I suggest doing a ''normal'' system shutdown and startup to release any file locks and complete any pending updates. If your data does not magically reappear, the most likely scenarios for complete data loss are:<br><br>(1) A Refresh started but the migration of data from your old profile to your new profile was incomplete, or<br>(2) Your old profile was locked, so Firefox ignored it and created a new one. <p>Here's how to investigate those two possibilities:</p> <p><em><strong>Did Firefox perform a Refresh?</strong></em></p> <p>Unless it was interrupted in progress, you should find a folder on your desktop named Old Firefox Data. Inside would be a semi-randomly-named folder with freshly updated files. Do you see anything like that?<br><br>If so, we'll suggest how to rescue key files or completely restore the earlier profile folder.</p> <p><em>If not...</em></p> <p><em><strong>Does the Profile Manager list your immediately previous profile folder?</strong></em></p> <p>To check on that, inside Firefox, type or paste <strong>about:profiles</strong> in the address bar and press Enter/Return to load it. <br><br>This page should list all the profiles Firefox is currently aware of. If you see a profile that is not currently set as default that looks promising, scroll down to it and click the <strong>Set as default profile</strong> button below that profile, then scroll back up and click the <strong>Restart normally</strong> button. (There are some other buttons, but I think those are still "under construction" so please ignore them.)<br><br>Firefox should exit and then start up using the other profile. <em>Is that the right one?</em><br><br><em>If it's not there...</em></p> <p><em><strong>Did Firefox orphan your old profile folder?</strong></em></p> <p>Here's how to check whether there are additional profile folders in the standard location in addition to the one you're using. Start by opening your current Firefox profile folder using either:<br><br>* "3-bar" menu button &gt; "?" button &gt; Troubleshooting Information<br>* (menu bar) Help &gt; Troubleshooting Information<br>* type or paste about:support in the address bar and press Enter/Return<br><br>In the first table on the page, click the "Open Folder" button, to launch a new window listing various files and folders in Windows Explorer.<br><br>In the Windows Explorer address bar, click the capitalized word Profiles to move up one level in the folder hierarchy. More than one folder here by any chance? Do the files in those folders look like they were last updated around the time of the update?</p> <p>If you've got any promising looking folders, we can discuss next steps to recover use of them, or at least your bookmarks.</p>

Question owner

Thanks. I checked those, nothing is there at all... However, in the process I figured out that nearly everything on my laptop has disappeared without a trace (except one picture), so I guess that when he "updated" it, my not tech friendly husband did something that he probably shouldn't have... I will try resetting to an earlier date and see what happens.

Thanks. I checked those, nothing is there at all... However, in the process I figured out that nearly everything on my laptop has disappeared without a trace (except one picture), so I guess that when he "updated" it, my not tech friendly husband did something that he probably shouldn't have... I will try resetting to an earlier date and see what happens.