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Chrome’s browser changes for your security and privacy

by Soft2share.com

It sounds optimistic, but increasing data breaches might tag 2019, the year of the private web browser.

Initially, browsers used to run after the appearance, security was an afterthought; take the example of Internet Explorer, while newer browsers like Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox are focused more on speed and reliability.

Ads kept the internet free for so long but since the invasive ad-tracking takes the browser in their hands; concerns around online privacy (or lack of privacy) finally got its day in the sun.

Chrome, which is capturing the two-thirds of all global browser market share, has finally doubled down its new security and privacy features after Firefox comes up with new anti-tracking blockers a month ago; Microsoft’s Chromium-based Edge’s offers seems more granular to control our data.

At Google’s annual conference Tuesday, Google revealed two new privacy-focused addons; better cookie controls, limiting advertisers from tracking users’ activities across websites, and an anti-fingerprint feature.

In case you’re not sure – cookies are bits of leftovers (information) on your device that helps websites or apps to remember who you are; these are cookies that keep you logged into a website, but at the same time helps them track what you’re doing on a site. These cookies can be encrypted with a security tool like VPN, but make sure the VPN provider must not logging your footprints.

There are some cookies that work across different websites to track you from one site to another, allowing them to profile you; they track where you go and when you visit what. Browsers let you manage cookies – switching off mean advertisers find it difficult to track you and forget your login information (it can be an inconvenience) and vice versa.

Soon, Chrome will also prevent cross-site cookies across domains without taking explicit consent from the user; means advertisers won’t see what you do on the various sites without asking to track you.

Cookies that work on a single domain aren’t impacted, so you won’t get logged out instantly.

Want an added benefit? Blocking cross-site cookies makes it difficult for hackers to exploit cross-site vulnerabilities. With a cross-site forgery attack, it’s possible for malicious websites to run commands on a legitimate website that you’re logged into without knowing; this can steal your data or take over your account/s.

Going forward, Google will also let cross-site cookies travel over HTTPS connections, means that cannot be intercepted, decrypted, modified or stolen by anyone trying to intercept your computer.

Cookies are just a one-way how users are tracked across the web; unique fingerprints is the new-in for browsers to see which sites you’re visiting.

Fingerprinting is a way for both websites and advertisers, to collect as much information about our browser as possible, including plugins extensions, device (specifications), else, that helps them to create a unique “fingerprint” that’s unique to your device.

Cookies are old-school, websites now look at your browser fingerprint even when you’re using an incognito mode or private browsing.

As per Google – it “plans” aggressively against fingerprinting, but didn’t pose a timeline of when the feature will roll out.

Following the footsteps of Apple, Mozilla, and Microsoft; Google is firing up to the privacy plate; means two-thirds of the internet-freaks set to soon benefit.

Google knows YOU, but won’t let others to Track you

Although, it’s a harsh reality that Google knows you better, even much better than your spouse, now taking the initiative to restrict websites using cookies, especially cross-site cookies; we soon be seeing this feature.

This change will help users to clear all their cookies, leaving single domain cookies unaffected, preserving credentials and settings. It will also let browsers to provide information about which sites are setting these cookies so that we could make informed choices about how our data is used.   

And yes, Google is also working on reducing the ways in which browsers can passively fingerprint to detect and take action against active fingerprinting efforts.

We believe these changes – though take time – but will improve users’ online privacy and security. We have already seen how cross-site cookies and fingerprinting have affected users more than just tracking.

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