If you’ve submitted a form or registered an account on the Internet, you would have stumbled on a CAPTCHA which normally consists of a few random characters that you’ll need to identify and enter the exact same characters into the input box. There are various types of CAPTCHA including the interactive ones like solving a simple puzzle, identifying objects, playing a simple game and etc. Basically the CAPTCHA is there to prevent spam from robots but they also cause inconvenience to real users especially the blind and visually impaired people as CAPTCHAs are hard to read.
There was a time when CAPTCHAs were made really difficult and nearly impossible to read due to their constant battle against the anti-CAPTCHA systems and this has caused more problems and money rather than solving it. Fortunately in the recent years you will find most CAPTCHA systems to be more user friendly such as the improved reCAPTCHA V2 which claims to be tough on bots and easy on humans.
The reality of using a CAPTCHA is it doesn’t really prevent bots because there are quite a number of automated CAPTCHA solving services such as DeathByCaptcha being offered at really affordable prices and they have an API which can be integrated into any software. If you have a project that requires constant solving of CAPTCHAs in your web browser, or you’re just simply annoyed by them and wished that there is a way to bypass by automatically solving it, you’re in luck because there are 3 such extensions that can work on Firefox, Chrome, Internet Explorer and Safari web browsers. 1. Anticaptcha
It is not easy to search for Anticaptcha extensions in the Firefox official add-on webpage because it doesn’t show up in the search result if you search for the keyword “captcha”. However, it appears when you search for the exact name of the extension which is “anticaptcha”. This Anticaptcha extension works only for the Firefox web browser and requires an account key from Anti-Captcha.com. Anti-Captcha.com is a professional service for automated CAPTCHA solving and it requires payment to add funds into your account to spend on solving each CAPTCHA.
So if you’re serious about having a lot CAPTCHAs solved automatically and accurately, be prepared to spend a bit of money. First you’ll need to register an Anti-Captcha.com account, add funds and you can find an account key by clicking on Settings > Account Settings.
Next, download and install the anticaptcha extension from your Firefox web browser and click on the new anticaptcha icon found in the toolbar. Copy the key from your anti-captcha.com account, paste it into the box and click the Setup button. Within a second, it should show your anti-captcha.com account balance.
When you visit any webpage that requires you to solve a CAPTCHA, this extension will automatically do it for you. By default, the anticaptcha extension automatically submits the form after solving the CAPTCHA and this behavior can be changed in the Settings. For some unknown reasons the anticaptcha extension doesn’t support solving both reCAPTCHA v1 and v2.
2. CAPTCHA Be Gone
CAPTCHA Be Gone currently works on the Mozilla Firefox and Internet Explorer web browsers with Google Chrome coming soon. Unlike others, CAPTCHA Be Gone is an on-demand automated CAPTCHA solving extension which is less intrusive. It doesn’t scan every web page for the availability of a CAPTCHA and automatically solving it for you or even worse, auto submitting the form! When you need to solve a CAPTCHA, simply right click anywhere on the page and select “Search for CAPTCHA” or simultaneously press Ctrl+Shift+S. If the extension is unable to find the CAPTCHA, you can right click on the CAPTCHA image and select “Solve CAPTCHA”.
When you get a popup at the bottom right of your screen saying “CAPTCHA solved”, the CAPTCHA is automatically copied to your clipboard where you can paste it to the input answer box. There’s no configuration or options to change for this extension but an initial setup is required. After installing the extension, press Ctrl+Shift+A in Firefox to access the Add-ons Manager, click the Options button for CAPTCHA Be Gone. Click the Sign In button and login with your CAPTCHA Be Gone credentials.
In terms of pricing, CAPTCHA Be Gone offers the best deal because you get an unlimited amount of CAPTCHA solving for only $3.50 per month or $33 per year.
A useful option especially for the visually impaired users is the ability to activate the voice notifications so that they are informed of the CAPTCHA presence on the webpage. When you want Rumola to auto solve the CAPTCHA, simply double click on the empty input text box where you’d type in the answer of the CAPTCHA and Rumola will do the rest.
Rumola is extremely fast, taking only 5-10 seconds to solve a CAPTCHA. It can solve reCAPTCHA v1, but unfortunately not the latest v2 which you’ll have to select images according to the description. Installing Rumola the first time will give you 5 free credits for testing. If you’d like to purchase more credits, it cost $0.99 for 50 credits valid for 1 year or $1.95 for 150 credits valid for six months.
Final Notes: We’ve reviewed Captcha Monster a few years ago but we believe they are no longer in operation although the official website is still available and claims that new registrations require an invitation. There’s another Firefox extension called Webvisum that comes with a number of features including automated CAPTCHA solving to help the blind and vision impaired community. Do take note that Webvisum is not open to the public and you must request an invitation to register for an account.
We’ve also tested “Captcha Solver & Captcha Bypass” by captchasolutions.com for Chrome and we’d advice you to stay away from it because it doesn’t work most of the time. The extension has no problems detecting CAPTCHAs in a web page and attempts to solve it, but we never get the answer. After testing numerous times on different CAPTCHAs, we finally received one answer for a test and the given answer didn’t even match the CAPTCHA image!