Security Experts:

Google Bolsters Safe Browsing Service With New Alert for Suspicious Software

Google is bolstering its Safe Browsing service with a new alert for potentially unwanted programs.

According to Google Staff Engineer Moheeb Abu Rajab, Google is expanding its Safe Browsing protection against malicious software programs disguised as legitimate downloads that make unexpected changes to a user's computer - for example, switching their homepage or other browser settings to ones they don't want. Starting next week, Chrome will display an alert whenever there is an attempt to trick users into downloading those programs, he blogged.

"You should be able to use the web safely, without fear that malware could take control of your computer, or that you could be tricked into giving up personal information in a phishing scam," he blogged. "That’s why we’ve invested so much in tools that protect you online."

"Our Safe Browsing service protects you from malicious websites and warns you about malicious downloads in Chrome," he continued. "We’re currently showing more than three million download warnings per week—and because we make this technology available for other browsers to use, we can help keep 1.1 billion people safe."

If users want to download the software despite the warning, they can get it from their Downloads list.

Earlier this year, Google added an alert to its Chrome browser to prompt Windows users whenever their settings appear to have been changed to see if they would like to restore their browser settings back to the factory default.

"As always, be careful and make sure you trust the source when downloading software," Rajab blogged.

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