Google recently announced a series of changes to Chrome that hope to put an end to nasty redirects and deceptive links when using their web browser both Android and desktop. The new features were designed to help avoid “abusive experiences” and improve web browsing and will be rolling out future Chrome updates.
The main target of the three new features are sites or links that send the end user to an entirely different, typically unwanted location. According to Google, one out of every five feedback reports are from users that have been redirected towards unexpected or potentially malicious content.
To fight back against websites and dodgy third-party elements that do this, Chrome update version 64 will introduce a blocking mechanism that recognises and stops unexpected redirects. Much like the browser’s pre-existing pop-up blocker, Chrome will also notify you when this happens with an info bar on mobile and desktop. However, Google is aware that this won’t fully solve the problem as some of the more iffy links have clever ways of deceiving the user.
The update will no doubt be familiar to any fake video or music player icons. Google calls these kind of links “abusive experiences”, and this also includes invisible website overlays which immediately send the user to another tab or window just be clicking anywhere on the page.
Google says, this should change in January as it is rolling out improvements to the pop-up blocker that will catch offending links in their tracks.