The next version of Chrome for desktops is shaping up to be a much bigger update than usual.
In addition to tab grouping and automatically blocking battery-killing ads, the browser is also getting a big set of improvements for security, safety, and privacy.
CHROME UPDATES: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
IMPROVED USER INTERFACE
Google’s moving some buttons and settings around to make them easier to find. Cookie settings, privacy settings, extensions, and Google sync settings are all becoming more prominent and will get better and clearer descriptive labels.
The extensions menu is being moved to a little puzzle icon that will appear by default in the main toolbar. You will still be able to pin extensions to the toolbar.
The new menu will make extensions easier to find. They’ll more clearly show each extension’s current state and permissions. Google is bringing cookies out to the top level of its settings menu where it’ll be easier to adjust them.
CHROME WILL BLOCK THIRD PARTY COOKIES
Chrome is on the slow road to fully blocking third-party cookies, a move other browsers like Safari and Firefox have already taken. Google will begin blocking third-party cookies but only in Incognito mode.
EXPANDED SAFETY CHECK TOOL
Settings will also feature a more prominent Safety Check tool. That tool already exists, but Google will expand it with a way to check for known password breaches.
If you use Chrome’s tools for saving your passwords, the browser will be able to warn you if any site you use has had a recent breach. It’ll also check for rogue extensions, Chrome updates, and whether you have Google’s Safe Browsing feature turned on.
ENHANCED SAFE BROWSING
On the next version of Chrome, Google will offer a new option called Enhanced Safe Browsing. If you turn it on, you’ll be sharing the URL of “uncommon” websites you visit with Google in real time to click on it.
Google said, “As soon as its Safe Browsing algorithm determines the URL you’re visiting is safe, it will anonymise the data, then, it will eventually delete that anonymized data entirely.”
Chrome will follow Mozilla in enabling DNS-over-HTTPS, a more secure way for your browser to resolve the human-readable URL you type in and the actual IP address of the site you’re visiting.
Google said, “Chrome will use a list of encrypted DNS providers that the company maintains to match to your ISP, then fall back to default DNS if it doesn’t have an encrypted option.”
The update will roll out over the coming weeks.