Browser Chrome is failing to inform users about Chrome Sync behavioral change.
Google has made an important change to the way the Chrome browser works; the move is not explained to its users in any way, and it has serious privacy repercussions.
But don’t bother after reading this you will know everything that is to know, starting with Chrome 69, whenever a Chrome user would access a Google-owned site, the browser would take that user’s Google identity and log the user into the Chrome in-browser account system.
The Sync feature has been present in Chrome for years, but until now, the system worked independently from the logged-in state of Google accounts.
Now, with the revelations of this new auto-login mechanism, a large number of users are angry that this unwanted and unethical modification that allows Google to link that person’s traffic to a specific browser and device with a higher degree of accuracy.
Chrome engineers said the auto-login mechanism was added in the browser because of shared computers/browsers.
Remember everything is not safe anymore. In order to stay away from any threats related to the cyber world, we recommend the install of antivirus for Windows or antivirus for Mac on every device that you own, depending on which OS your device is running. If you are a company, it is also recommended to hire every year a specialized cybersecurity company that will run annual tests on your company’s network. These tests include penetration testing and ethical hacking tests;
But despite the good intentions behind this move, users are still angry. First and foremost, they are angry because they don’t have this ability to decide when they log into their browser, and also because they Google had never told them about this new feature.
Almost all users who never used Chrome’s Sync feature before most probably are logged into Chrome right now, as they read this article if they’ve also logged into a Google account somewhere on Gmail, YouTube, or any other service.
Researchers also pointed out that Google has redesigned the Sync account interface in a way that it is not clear anymore to users when they are logged in or what button they should push to start syncing.
This change is nothing more than a “dark pattern,” a term used to describe user interfaces that have been intentionally designed to be misleading.
In its current form, the Sync interface is indeed misleading, and a user might be one wrong click away from giving all their browser data to Google by accident.
Microsoft has suffered a major reputational blow due to its initially hidden Windows 10 telemetry practices, and so has Facebook in the recent Cambridge Analytica scandal. Twitter is also known to be flooded with bots, fake news, and political influence campaigns, and Reddit is a home for communities dedicated to abuse, harassment, and physical threats.
Through the years, Google has managed to keep a shiny reputation, despite being known to be the biggest data hoarder around. Good news is users can disable the sneaky auto-login behavior by accessing the chrome://flags//#account-consistency page and disabling the Account Consistency option.
We would continue to monitor this cybersecurity problem. Meanwhile, users should keep a keen eye out for any cyber attacks. Remember to use an antivirus for Windows or antivirus for Mac in every device that you own, depending on which OS your machine is running, If you are a company we recommend to hire every year a specialized cybersecurity company that will run annual tests on your company’s network, tests like this include: penetration testing and ethical hacking.