Google Chrome follows Mozilla Firefox method of ‘Trusted’ extensions: Enhanced Safe Browsing mode doubles down on warnings about suspicious files

Google Chrome Safe Browsing
Safe Browsing, be it extensions or downloads. Pic credit: Andy Li/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

Google is doubling down on precautions and warnings in Chrome. The Chromium-based web browser is boosting the Enhanced Safe Browsing mode to warn about unverified extensions and suspicious files.

Google Chrome seems to be taking a leaf out of Mozilla’s book pertaining to ‘Verified or Trusted Extensions’. Additionally, the browser will now spring up additional warnings when users deal with potentially unsafe files.

Chrome Extensions verification program will now warn ‘Proceed with caution’ while downloading ‘untrusted’ plugins:

Google Chrome has an ‘Extension Verification Program’. And unlike the now-retired program for Mozilla Firefox, it is still active. Moving ahead, the program will get even more prominence if users activate Enhanced Safe Browsing mode inside Google Chrome.

After activation of the Enhanced Safe Browsing, Chrome will warn users if they attempt to install an extension from the Chrome Web Store that isn’t part of a ‘Trusted’ list.

There are hundreds of extensions for Google Chrome. The search giant assures it has slapped the Trusted badge on about 75 percent of them. In case Chrome users attempt to install any extension from the remaining 25 percent, the browser will throw a cautionary warning.

Needless to mention, Chrome users can ignore the warning and continue to install the extension. Moreover, the warnings do not necessarily mean the extension is dangerous. It might simply mean the developer is new to the extensions store or may have recently committed a minor policy violation.

Developers need to abide by the Chrome Web Store Developer Program Policies for at least ‘a few’ months before Google “trusts” their extensions.

Google doubles down on warnings through the Safe Browsing analysis and Enhanced Safe Browsing mode:

Apart from shielding against ‘untrusted’ chrome extensions, Google is doubling down protection through warnings against suspicious and potentially harmful files.

Whenever a Chrome user will download a file, the browser will conduct a Google Safe Browsing analysis to determine if it’s possibly suspicious. If Safe Browsing thinks a file is risky but not obviously unsafe, the user will see a warning.

Needless to mention, the user has to have Enhanced Safe Browsing mode activated. It will also ask if the user will like to scan the file for a more detailed analysis.

If the user grants consent, Chrome will upload the file for a more detailed analysis. It is possible the user might see another warning if Safe Browsing believes it’s unsafe.

Needless to mention, users can ignore all warnings and continue working with the files. And Google assures it will delete all files that users uploaded to Safe Browsing for detailed scanning.

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