Chrome's next update could transform browsing on your phone

Google Chrome
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Google is planning to introduce additional security measures for users of the Android version of Chrome, making browsing the web on your phone a much safer, more private experience.

Mobile users will soon have access to some of the security checkup tools that are currently only available in the desktop version of Chrome.

Currently only available as a hidden setting in the experimental Canary build of Chrome for Android, the browser's Safety Check feature has landed in the mobile version of the app. This security tool performs important tests to ensure that your browser settings are optimally configured.

The feature lets you perform three checks to ensure that your browser is as secure as can be. The first test checks that you have the Safe Browsing feature enabled so you're protected against dangerous sites.

Second, Safety Check will scan the passwords you have saved in the browser to see if any have been compromised in a data breach.

Finally, it will check to see that you have the very latest version of Chrome installed so you have all of the latest security updates.

The Android version of Safety Check is slightly different to the desktop version, however. Ordinarily, the scan would check for see whether there are any dangerous browser add-ons installed, but as the mobile version of Android doesn't support extensions, this particular feature isn't necessary.

Safe as houses

If you want to try Safety Check in Android for Chrome, you'll have to download the Canary build of the browser. This experimental build of the browser can be downloaded from the Play Store, but Google warns that: "This release has not been tested. It may be unstable or fail to run at times."

With Chrome Canary installed, you can enable the Safety check by visiting chrome://flags, searching for 'Safety Check' and selecting 'Enabled' from the drop-down menu under 'Safety Check on Android'. After restarting Chrome you can head to 'Settings 'and you will find that Safety Check is now available to you – just tap the 'Check now' button to run the tests.

Via Techdows

Sofia Elizabella Wyciślik-Wilson
Freelance writer

Sofia is a tech journalist who's been writing about software, hardware and the web for nearly 25 years – but still looks as youthful as ever! After years writing for magazines, her life moved online and remains fueled by technology, music and nature.

Having written for websites and magazines since 2000, producing a wide range of reviews, guides, tutorials, brochures, newsletters and more, she continues to write for diverse audiences, from computing newbies to advanced users and business clients. Always willing to try something new, she loves sharing new discoveries with others.

Sofia lives and breathes Windows, Android, iOS, macOS and just about anything with a power button, but her particular areas of interest include security, tweaking and privacy. Her other loves include walking, music, her two Malamutes and, of course, her wife and daughter.

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