Chrome Upgrades Password Security Features on Android, iOS

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Google is bringing improvements to password security and other safety features on Chrome for Android and iOS. The browser will alert you if any of the passwords you’ve asked it to save have been compromised, and lead you straight to the right ‘change password’ form. Chrome sends a copy of your username and passwords to Google using a special form of encryption – this lets Google check them against lists of credentials known to be compromised, without deriving your username or password.

The tech giant has added support for a Web standard that allows websites to declare the password change URLs for easy access. The use of this standard will allow Chrome take users directly to the right webpage to change password after alerting that a particular has been compromised in a data leak.

Google will also be introducing a few other features in Chrome 86 that is rolling out now, to improve user security. It will also be launching Enhanced Safe Browsing for Android, through which Chrome can protect you against phishing, malware, and other dangerous sites, by sharing real-time data with Google’s Safe Browsing Service. Google had released Enhanced Safe Browsing for desktop earlier this year, and said in a blog post that its predictive phishing protections had seen a roughly 20 percent drop in users typing their passwords into phishing sites.

Chrome is also introducing a biometric authentication step before autofilling passwords for iOS. You can authenticate using your Face ID, Touch ID, or phone passcode. If you enable Chrome autofill in Settings, Chrome Password Manager allows you to autofill saved passwords into iOS apps or browsers.

Chrome 86 will bring ‘mixed form warnings’ on Android to alert and warn users before submitting a non-secure form that’s embedded in an HTTPS page. These pages can create security risks for users by offering them downloads over non-secure links or using forms that don’t submit data securely.

It will also block or warn on some insecure downloads initiated by secure pages. This is part of Google Chrome’s plan to gradually block mixed downloads all together.

In its next release, Chrome will be bringing Safety Check to Android and iOS. This includes checking for compromised passwords, informing you if Safe Browsing is enabled, and if the version of Chrome you’re running is updated with the latest security protections. You will also be able to use Chrome on iOS to autofill saved login details on other apps or browsers.

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