Google, Microsoft and Mozilla have each issued reprieves to Transport Layer Security (TLS) 1.0 and 1.1, aged encryption protocols that were to be bounced from browser support in March, because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

By common agreement, Google’s Chrome, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer (IE) and Edge, and Mozilla’s Firefox were to disable support for TLS 1.0 and 1.1 early in 2020. They, along with Apple – which produces Safari – announced the move a year and a half ago, noting then that the protocols had been made obsolete by TLS 1.2 and 1.3.

Apple, Google and Mozilla had committed to dropping support in March 2020, while Microsoft had only promised to purge TLS 1.0 and 1.1 sometime during the first half of this year.

But it was Microsoft that was most detailed about the TLS turnabout. “In light of current global circumstances, we will be postponing this planned change – originally scheduled for the first half of 2020,” Karl Pflug, of the Edge developer experience team, wrote in a post to a company blog.

(Microsoft has generally used the “current global circumstances” phrasing or something similar, rather than coming out and saying “COVID-19” or “coronavirus.”)

The plug-pulling of TLS 1.0 and 1.1 will only be delayed, Pflug continued. Edge – the newer, Chromium-based Edge, will reinstitute the banishment “no sooner” than Edge 84, currently slated to release around July 14. The older browsers in Microsoft’s inventory, IE11 and the legacy Edge, will disable the protocols by default as of Sept. 8.

Copyright © 2020 IDG Communications, Inc.

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