In the coming weeks, Google is rolling out a number of updates and improvements to Chrome to bolster security and enhance user privacy. But as well as introducing new options and features to keep users of the browser safe online, Google is also making existing options easier to use and understand.
Chrome's interface is getting a revamp to make things clearer. For example, Site Settings have been rearranged so it is easier to changes settings relating to site permission. The 'Clear browsing data' option has also be moved to a more prominent position, and there are numerous other security and privacy changes, including DNS over HTTPS and a updated safety check tool.
The new version of the safety check tool will inform you if any of the passwords you have saved in Chrome have been part of security breach. If any have been compromised, you'll be given advice about what you should do.
On top of this, the tool will ensure that you have the latest and most secure version of Chrome installed, make sure that you don't have any dangerous browser extensions installed, and warn you if you have the protective Safe Browsing feature disabled. There's also a new Enhanced Safe Browsing features which ensure you're not visiting dangerous sites or downloading malicious software.
A significant new feature is Secure DNS, which is Google's version of DNS-over-HTTPS. This security feature encrypts DNS lookups to ensure that they cannot be intercepted or seen by third parties.
Safe and sound
In a change to the Chrome interface, Google is adding a new 'puzzle' icon to the browser toolbar. This is where you will be able to access your extensions and control the permissions they have.
When using the private Incognito mode, in addition to not storing your browsing history, Chrome will also start to block third-party cookies – although it will be possible to override this should the need arise.
Google says that all of these security and privacy features and enhancement will be landing in the desktop version of Chrome on Windows, macOS and Linux in the 'upcoming weeks', but no specific timetable has been publicised. Some features, such as third-party cookie blocking in Incognito mode, will also be coming to Android, though again, we're not sure exactly when.
- Find out how to get Gmail dark mode