Google has updated the phishing tools in Chrome by adding predictive phishing protection, personalizing Security Checkup and enabling it to detect when a user’s settings have been hijacked. The updated Google Chrome Phishing tools are arriving just in time for National Cyber Security Awareness Month. They’re paired with updates to the company’s recovery tools to help users recover from a phishing attack faster.
One of the new features is an update to Google’s Safe Browsing technology, which warns users that they’re visiting a phishing site. According to the search engine giant, its Safe Browsing tech has been in use for more than a decade and now is protecting over 3 billion devices. Until now, a big problem for Safe Browsing and similar technology made by other companies is new phishing websites because it can take a while before Chrome or any other browser “learns” that a particular site is used for phishing. Even the fastest scanners can’t prevent a phishing attack from a site that was used for an attack just moments after being created.
However, the latest update to this Google Chrome phishing tool has added technology to predict which sites are probably phishing sites even if they haven’t existed very long. After the update, Safe Browsing can now show Chrome users a warning just in time to keep them from entering their login details on a potential phishing site.
Google explained that the historical data used by its Safe Browsing technology enables it to predict risks in real time. Currently the new predictive feature will only protect Google passwords, but at some point, the company plans to roll it out to cover all passwords that are saved in Chrome. The company also said that it plans to add further protections for those who have already typed their Google login details into a suspected phishing site. These protections will try to keep the user’s account from being compromised.
The company also added three new Google Chrome phishing tools aimed at those trying to recover from an attack. The first is detection for hijacked settings, so users whose settings have been changed without their consent will receive a popup asking whether they want to revert to their previous settings. Google also added a Chrome Cleanup feature to alert users when unwanted software is hitching a ride with the software they actually wanted to download. The feature makes it easier to remove this unwanted software. Google also added anti-virus maker ESET’s detection engine to Chrome’s sandbox technology to make it stronger.
Another new Google cyber-security tool is the Advanced Protection Program, which is designed for those who feel they are at the highest risk for an online attack. The company gave examples such as a journalist who needs to protect her sources’ confidentiality or people who are in or are trying to get out of an abusive relationship.
Users who are even more concerned about their online security than the average user can enroll in Google’s new Advanced Protection program. Those who enroll in the program will receive continual updates to their accounts’ security as Google meets emerging threats. The program targets phishing, accidental sharing of sensitive information and preventing fraudulent account access.