Google’s Safe Browsing Learns Some More – Will Protect Against Social Engineering Attacks

Rafia Shaikh

Google has announced to use its Safe Browsing policies to block social engineering attacks, protecting users from installing unwanted software or revealing their personal information. Websites have long been a center for propagating malware that is hidden inside deceptive download buttons or image ads. Once clicked, these social engineering tactics trick a user into downloading malware onto their devices or give up personal information. Things will, however, change now as Google takes a stand against these social engineering attacks.

google safe browsing

Google's Safe Browsing gets more intelligent:

Google’s Safe Browsing policy was initiated to warn users about a website’s expired certificate or phishing sites. As Google’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) improves, Safe Browsing also benefits, becoming better at protecting users from more hidden traps. This new Safe Browsing algorithm will target the deceptive download buttons that lure you into installing plugins to watch a video, flicking pop-ups warning you that your software is out of date, and everything in between. Google says embedded content - such as ads - on a web page will be considered social engineering when they either:

  • Pretend to act, or look and feel, like a trusted entity — like your own device or browser, or the website itself.
  • Try to trick you into doing something you’d only do for a trusted entity — like sharing a password or calling tech support.

This change has been expected for a long time now as it might have been interesting to spot real links among the fake ones, the game has lasted longer than we could enjoy it. Not only users, but websites too now want to earn their visitors’ trust by blocking harmful content. The sites filled with these kinds of malware-containing ads looking more to spread malware or hack into users' devices than to actually "advertise" end up losing credibility among their visitors.

These attacks are engineered to hack into users’ devices, get personal information, passwords, credit card details, and more. Considered as one of the easiest and most effective ways of hacking, the latest Safe Browsing algorithm will help protect over a billion users of Google’s Chrome browser, Firefox and Safari browsers.


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