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Stop Safari from autosubmitting login forms

July 2 2019 by Jeff Johnson
To support this blog please buy my apps StopTheMadness and Underpass

Today I released StopTheMadness version 8.0 in the Mac App Store. There's one new feature: StopTheMadness can now stop Safari from autosubmitting login forms!

The behavior of password AutoFill changed in Safari 12.1. According to Apple, Safari now "Streamlines website login when filling credentials with Password AutoFill". What this means is that Safari doesn't just AutoFill login forms, it also automatically submits login forms on AutoFill. Many Safari users are greatly upset with this change. Autosubmit of login forms has caused a number of problems, including even login failure on some sites. It can also prevent you from checking "Remember Me" boxes on login forms. There are some excellent articles by Glenn Fleishman and Michael Tsai discussing the issue of Safari login autosubmit in more detail.

The good news is that StopTheMadness 8.0 can stop Safari from automatically submitting login forms. There's a new website protection called "Stop autosubmit of autofilled forms". This is disabled by default, so you'll need to enable it manually in the StopTheMadness Website Protections. You can selectively enable the protection for individual sites, or you can enable it in the Default Website Protections for all sites. With the new protection enabled, Safari will no longer automatically submit forms. Instead, StopTheMadness will display a confirmation that asks whether you want to submit the form or cancel. If you cancel, then you can make changes to the AutoFilled form and submit manually. Note that when the confirmation is displayed, you can press the return key to submit or press the escape key to cancel if you want to avoiding clicking a button.

I wanted to release the new StopTheMadness feature to the public as soon as possible, because so many people are bothered by Safari login autosubmit. The feature may need some further refinement, however, which is one reason why it's disabled by default. You might want to use it only on specific sites where login autosubmit causes you problems. Otherwise, the new feature could get a little annoying. With the feature enabled, every form submission will require a confirmation. I don't have a method yet of narrowing it down only to login forms. And manually submitting a form also requires the same confirmation. Thus, you should use the new feature with caution. On the other hand, it's fairly easy to press the return key to submit, as I mentioned above, so maybe it wouldn't be overly annoying to have enabled everywhere. Try it and see!

If you find StopTheMadness useful, please help to spread the word. My customers love StopTheMadness and leave outstanding ratings and reviews in the Mac App Store, for which I'm very grateful. The only problem is that so few other people out there even know about StopTheMadness. I think it could benefit any web browser user — in other words, everyone! — so the potential audience is huge. As a lone developer, though, I just can't afford to buy advertising campaigns. I haven't been able to get much media coverage either. Thus, my only option is word of mouth advertising. I hereby appoint all of you as my official spokespersons. Tell your family. Tell your friends. Tell your enemies! Talk to your doctor about StopTheMadness.

Update

I've now released StopTheMadness 8.1 in the Mac App Store. I tweaked the new "Stop autosubmit of autofilled forms" protection so that you'll only be asked for confirmation to submit forms that contain a password field. (In version 8.0, you'd be asked for confirmation to submit any form, including search fields, for example.) This tweak makes the feature much less annoying, and now it should be ok to enable it in the Default Website Protections.

If you experience any problems, please contact support to let me know. Support emails go directly to my inbox, so I'll typically see them very quickly. There are no layers of bureaucracy in my one person company!

Update July 5

I've written a support article explaining in more detail how the new feature works.

To support this blog please buy my apps StopTheMadness and Underpass

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