Google Will Help Protect Android Users by Adding Default Safe Browsing Feature

June 15, 2018

google safe browser android featureThe technology giant Google has announced in April this year that will add more protection for users of its mobile operating system Android. In December last year, Google integrated a feature called Safe Browsing in all applications with WebView, however, now the security feature will be enabled by default with the launch of the latest version 66. The company hopes this way to provide additional protection for Android users as they have been the most popular target for cyber-criminals over the past years.

What the Safe Browsing feature does is check for malicious content websites that the user tries to open, and if any such content is detected, the tool displays a warning message before the suspicious page is loaded. The dialog message gives the user the option to close the website and report the details of the possible security breach to Google. Thus, the company’s team can do further research on the potential threat. The user can also choose to continue with the loading of the website in case he or she is sure that it is safe. Safe Browsing is, therefore, an additional layer of security for users surfing the Internet from browsers, or from a mobile or desktop application. At the same time, it does not limit the user’s freedom in visiting pages on the web.

Safe Browsing has been originally available in Google Chrome for mobile devices since late 2015, yet now it will be available also for all Android applications that can launch web pages. The best thing is that the developers of Android apps that feature WebView will not need to make any changes to profit from the Safe Browsing protection.

For Android, Safe Browsing for WebView is available since version 8.0 of the mobile operating system whereby the feature is based on the same technology as Chrome for Android. The software engineer at Google Nate Fischer explains that as soon as Safe Browsing is triggered, the Android application will display a warning message to the user and receive a network error. Developers can customize this behavior for apps built for API Level 27 and above.

According to Google, the Safe Browsing feature is already protecting nearly 3 billion devices, but the adoption rates are growing fast in the last few years.

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