New Google Chrome Feature Warns User When Hijacked

In the wake of the Chrome extension debacle that unfolded earlier in the month, members of the security team for the lightning-quick web browser have taken a proactive approach to showing the rest of the world they’re not slacking off in their own department.

Today they announced they have come up with a new feature, one that will automatically warn users if their browsers have been hijacked by malware or particularly malicious phishing attempts. In a blog post from Google’s vice president of engineering Linus Upson last Friday, he touted the new warning signal,which is designed to allow users to restore their entire browser to a stock, cached state, based on a version of another feature which was introduced in October.

Some of the ways that hackers like to take advantage of Chrome include injecting unscrupulous ads into popular websites, or enticing users to click on a button or banner that can then take control of an extension or add-on installed on top of the Chrome infrastructure.

Whenever the automatic service detects an intrusion, a pop-up presents the user with the option to reset their settings immediately, preventing malware programs from turning the choice off ahead of time in the Preferences menu.


“To make sure the reset option reaches everyone who might need it, Chrome will be prompting Windows users whose settings appear to have been changed if they’d like to restore their browser settings back to factory default. If you’ve been affected by settings hijacking and would like to restore your settings, just click “Reset” on the prompt below when it appears.”

Upson recommends you only utilize this nuclear-style option in response to a threat that can not be held back any other way, as you’ll immediately lose control over all your current extensions, saved passwords, browser history, and cookie cache upon selecting “Reset”.

All affected extensions can then be switched back on one by one, as the users manually goes through and deems each one safe enough to roam the open web once again.