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5/19/2020
05:00 PM
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Google Chrome Redesign Puts Security & Privacy in Users' Hands

The Chrome browser will tell users if their browser is up to date, malicious extensions are installed, and/or a password has been compromised.

Google has launched new security and privacy tools in Google Chrome, as well as a redesign of the browser's desktop security and privacy settings, to help people control their online safety.

The changes include more intuitive controls for tasks such as managing cookies. Users can choose if and how cookies are used, block third-party cookies in regular or Incognito mode, and block all cookies on some or all sites. Site Settings controls are now split into two categories so it's easier to find sensitive website permissions — for example, access to camera, microphone, and location. A section renamed "You and Google" lets users control which data is shared with the company.

Google is also introducing "safety check in settings" so users can check their browser security. The tool tells users if passwords stored in Chrome have been compromised and how to fix them; it also warns them if Safe Browsing is disabled. The safety check lets users know if their browser is running the latest version of Chrome, and how to uninstall malicious extensions.

Incognito mode, which doesn't save browsing history or information entered in forms, will now have stronger privacy protections. In addition to deleting cookies when an Incognito browser window is closed, Chrome will also block third-party cookies by default in each session and include a control on the New Tab page. Users can enable third-party cookies for specific sites.

Today's news includes two opt-in security upgrades. One is Enhanced Safe Browsing, which if enabled checks whether websites and downloads are dangerous by sending data about them to Google Safe Browsing. Google is also launching Secure DNS, a Chrome feature that uses DNS-over-HTTPS to encrypt DNS lookup and block attackers from seeing which site users visit.

"By default, Chrome will automatically upgrade you to DNS-over-HTTPS if your current service provider supports it," writes senior product manager AbdelKarim Mardini in a blog post on today's announcements. "You can also configure a different secure DNS provider in the Advanced security section, or disable the feature altogether."

Read the full blog post here.

 
 
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