Google cracking down on data-stealing Chrome extensions from October 15

“The new Google Minimum Permission and updated User Data policies will go into effect on October 15, blocking potential spammers and adware.”

Google is reportedly cracking down on Chrome extensions with dubious intents and purposes. The browser presently has a lot of extensions that have been the root cause of data breaches. On this note, Google implemented Project Strobe last year, which aims to gradually improve user privacy and data security across all services on offer with Google and Android. Earlier this year, Strobe started cracking down on Chrome extensions that violated user privacy and did not meet minimum requirements that were set by Google.

Now, Google has announced that its new policies, including Minimum Permission and revised Data Usage conditions, will go into effect from October 15, which is when many of Chrome’s data-collecting extensions will completely stop working. Google has previously urged developers to update their privacy policy and post them to Google, and also update their extensions in accordance to the new policies if they wish to continue on the Chrome app and extensions store. Beyond October 15, while old extensions will be removed, new applications for the Chrome store that do not match the updated data policies will be outright rejected.

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So far, Chrome extensions could collect and misuse user data, including personal and identifiable information, by logging their traffic, relaying the information to a third party data exchange site, where the information could be bought by potential clients. Such kinds of data breaches have become increasingly common, and are the most frequent kind to be spotted within organisations.

Given the popularity of the Chrome browser, it was imperative that Google improves the security level of extensions of Chrome. The versatility and open nature of Chrome is one of the most important factors as to why so many users prefer using the browser despite widely reported bugs and practices. With the extensions tending towards becoming more trustworthy, it remains to be seen which of the more popular extensions face the ban, with some VPN services almost certain to be in the list.

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