Warning: Google Chrome users urged to protect themselves by changing their settings
Google Chrome users have been warned to take extra steps to protect themselves online with simple changes to their settings.
Taking these extra steps could help Chrome users avoid dangerous and deceptive websites that might steal passwords or infect devices.
One way is to always update Chrome to the latest version.
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“Chrome checks for updates regularly and, when one is available, Chrome downloads it immediately and then applies it when you close and reopen the browser,” Google senior UX designer for Chrome Mollie Bates posted.
“But if you haven’t closed your browser in a while, you may have a pending update visible in the upper right corner of the browser window.”
Bates added this update can be applied by simply clicking “Update” or by closing and reopening Chrome.
Another way to protect yourself is storing strong and unique passwords on Chrome to make it less vulnerable to hackers.
“If you’re using a password manager to store ‘fido1234’ as your password for every site, you’re not making the most of the tool,” Bates said.
“Google Password Manager can suggest and save a strong, unique password of gobbledygook (like KZamPPzj43T9mQM).
“Then, Chrome will autofill the password next time you need it — on any device.”
Chrome users are also advised not to ignore any Chrome download warnings that may pop up while browsing online.
“We are constantly working to remove warnings that aren’t useful; for example, we recently re-evaluated our list of dangerous file types which reduced low risk warnings by more than 90 (per cent).
“This means you can trust that a download warning really means danger.”
Users are also encouraged to turn on Enhanced Safe Browsing protection in Chrome settings to increase online protection from risky websites and downloads, which works by sharing real-time data with Google service Safe Browsing.
Once signed in, Chrome and other Google apps such as Gmail and Google Drive can provide protection based on threats encountered on the web and attacks against a Google account.
Bates said people using Enhanced Safe Browsing are phished 20 per cent to 35 per cent less.
Lastly, Chrome users are encouraged to protect their Google accounts with two-step verification, and to ensure they are signed in to that Google account while browsing on Chrome.
“Signing in with both a password and a second step on your phone protects against password-stealing scams,” Bates said.
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