Skip to main content

Google’s new Password Alert extension for Chrome guards against phishing

chrome password phishing security extension passwordalert
Image used with permission by copyright holder
Google Chrome is upping the ante when it comes to online password security. This week a new extension was rolled out that would alert users if their Google passwords had fallen victim to a phishing scam. The extension works in a simplistic yet effective manner.

Using this new extension, your Chrome browser will save whats called a “hashed” (think, encrypted) version of your password. While holding onto that, it will keep an eye out for any time you punch your password in while using Google Chrome. If you type your password in somewhere that doesn’t belong to an official Google account or website, you will be notified to change your password.

The use for an extension like this only grows as more and more sites offer “log in with Google” and “log in with Facebook” in lieu of having to create a whole plethora of user accounts. While most of these are legitimate, it’s easy to think that a less scrupulous user wouldn’t notice the difference between an authentic and inauthentic log in.

Cleverly, the extension goes one step forward in an attempt to prevent situations exactly like that one. It reads the HTML of whatever site you navigate, too, searching for imitated Google web pages. The new Chrome extension is open source, so while it only functions for Google services now, it could potentially be expanded to other services in the near future.

Speaking on the new extension Google security engineer Drew Hintz said, “In the security industry we expect users to know when it’s ok to type their password. That is OK, and isn’t. That’s an unreasonable demand. This helps you make that decision as to whether the place you just typed your password was a fine place to type it or not.”

If you’re using Chrome you can install Password Alert now.

Editors' Recommendations

Andre Revilla
Andre Revilla is an entrepreneur and writer from Austin, TX that has been working in and covering the consumer tech space for…
The best ChatGPT Chrome extensions to bring AI to your browser
GPT EZ themes.

Want ChatGPT closer to hand? One of the best ways to have quick and easy access to ChatGPT is through its range of Chrome extensions. They also give you better ways of using ChatGPT, including helping you to write better prompts to get improved responses, or granting ChatGPT the ability to search the internet, which provides access to more up-to-date information.

Here are the best ChatGPT Chrome extensions you can use right now.

Read more
Google Chrome’s latest update solves the browser’s biggest problem
Google Chrome icon in mac dock.

Google Chrome is one of the best browsers around, but it's always had a big problem with memory usage. It's finally addressing the issue in a new Chrome 110 update that promises to reduce RAM usage by up to 30% and make the browser for efficient.

Chrome has a reputation for its speed, security, and feature drops, as well as a penchant for hanging on to your precious RAM like an episode of Hoarders. Granted, Google has made strides in improving Chrome's memory efficiency by hibernating tabs in the background, but it still struggles with it compared to Microsoft Edge or Mozilla Firefox.

Read more
Google may have just fixed Chrome’s most annoying problem
A Macbook with Google Chrome opened to a Gmail inbox.

While Google Chrome is one of the best web browsers, over the years it has gained a reputation for being something of a resource hog, gobbling up your PC’s memory like it’s going out of style. That can be a problem if you’re running other resource-heavy tasks and don’t want things to slow down. Now, Chrome has been updated with two new features that cut down on memory usage and extend your laptop’s battery life, according to Google. The changes are set to roll out today with the latest release of Chrome on desktop (version m108).The first new feature, dubbed Memory Saver, is designed to reduce the amount of memory Chrome’s tabs use. It does this by freeing up memory from inactive tabs, and putting them to sleep so they can’t monopolize your system’s resources. When you need to access the tabs again, they will be reloaded and become active. The goal of Energy Saver, meanwhile, is fairly self-explanatory -- helping your laptop battery last longer -- but it does so in a somewhat interesting way. When your battery drops to 20%, Chrome will try to prolong your battery life by “limiting background activity and visual effects for websites with animations and videos.”Presumably, this means Chrome will limit the kind of flashy effects that have made a comeback in web design in recent years. Google says that when these new features launch, users will still be able to customize them to their liking. You can disable either Memory Saver or Energy Saver (or both), and mark certain websites as exempt in Chrome’s settings. The changes could turn out to be important. While Chrome has managed to become the dominant Windows web browser and one of the best browsers for Mac, it has been plagued by poor memory management for years. If Memory Saver and Energy Saver are able to help ameliorate that -- and make your battery last longer too -- then Google might have gone some way to fixing Chrome’s biggest problem. Both Memory Saver and Energy Saver will be launched globally over the next few weeks. The features are coming to Chrome on Windows, macOS, and ChromeOS.

Read more