8 Tips to Make Chrome More Secure on Your Device

Metaverse News

As Chrome's popularity has grown over the past decade, third-party associations in the form of extensions, apps, and software have also increased. These integrations can help you be more productive, but they can also put you and your data at risk.

Luckily, Chrome is one of the most secure browsers available. It comes with many built-in features to ensure your online safety, but you might not be familiar with all of them. To help protect your browser, here are eight tips to make the browser more secure.

1. Shifting to Chrome's Enhanced Protection

Safe browsing, a security service by Google to protect users from malicious websites, offers two types of protection; Standard and Enhanced. Unless you've changed it previously, your browser is set to Standard protection by default. Standard protection warns you about unsafe websites before you visit them and helps you avoid potentially harmful files and extensions.

Enhanced protection offers much more, however. It's a must-have security setting with features such as warning users to change passwords if exposed during a breach, improving the security on other Google apps you use, and predicting harmful events before they happen.

Here is how you can shift your browser's protection from Standard to Enhanced to improve your security:

  1. Navigate to Chrome's Settings by tapping the three vertical dots in the top-right corner.
  2. Click on Privacy and Security in the left sidebar and navigate to Security.
  3. Enable Enhanced protection under Safe Browsing.
    Enabling Enhanced Protection in Chrome Settings

2. Avoid Visiting Insecure Websites

It can be risky to send sensitive data to a website with an insecure connection. Google warns its users of potential harm when they land on any website or a specific page that provides an insecure connection.

Don't visit these unsafe websites unless you have to, and if you do, don't add any personal information. Further, if you frequently use and save the same credentials (such as a username, email, and password) on most websites, avoid using them on such websites.

To notify users of a secure connection, a padlock symbol appears behind the address bar, and the URL begins with “HTTPS”, most of the time.

RELATED: How Malicious Chrome Extensions Spy on Businesses

3. Updating Chrome Regularly

Google releases new updates to Chrome every few months to improve the user experience. Chrome automatically updates itself when a new update is available. However, if auto-updates are turned off, you might be using an outdated version of Chrome unknowingly.

Using an outdated Chrome version exposes your personal information as well as infects your system with malware. To ensure a smooth and secure experience, make sure to keep your browser updated.

Frequently check for new Chrome updates if they are available to stay current. Tap on the three vertical dots in the top-right corner and click on Help>About Google Chrome to check if your Chrome is up-to-date.

If you see the message, “Chrome is up-to-date”, you are good to go. If not, update and relaunch your browser.

4. Enable Two-Step Verification on Your Google Account

To make your Google account more secure, two-step verification adds an additional step to the login process. Whenever you log in to your account with two-step verification enabled, Google will authenticate your identity by one of three identification methods you set.

As a result, even if hackers gain access to your username and password, they will be unable to access your personal information.

To enable two-step verification, log in to your Google account and navigate to the Security tab from the left sidebar. Under Signing in to Google, you'll find a two-Step verification option that is off by default.

Tap on it and click Get Started. Google will ask you to log into your account again and provide you with three options.

The first way is to use the Google prompt to choose your mobile phone for two-step verification. With this option, Google will send you notifications on your phone to review to sign in to your account.

The other two methods include using a physical security key to sign in and receiving codes from text messages or phone calls on your cell phone.

After selecting your preferred option, tap Continue. Google will ask you to add your phone number as a backup if you lose your mobile or security key.

5. Using Chrome's Safety Check

Chrome has a built-in tool that allows you to test how secure your browser is. This tool helps you identify any data breaches, available browser updates, malicious extensions, the strength of your saved passwords, and the type of protection you are using in your browser.

To run a security check, follow these steps:

  1. Navigate to Chrome's Settings.
  2. Under Safety check, tap on Check Now.
    Safety Check in Chrome

Chrome will alert you about your weak security areas in a few seconds. Regularly running safety checks will ensure your safety.

6. Regularly Clean Your Computer

While anti-virus software does the job of removing malware from your system, it can also miss on the potential threat that might be hindering your browser processing. This is where the Chrome Clean-up computer feature kicks in. It can help you identify and remove viruses from your computer.

Here's how to clean your computer with Chrome:

  1. Go to Chrome's Settings.
  2. Tap on Advanced at the bottom of the settings page.
  3. Scroll to the bottom of Advanced settings and click on “Clean up computer”.
  4. Click on Find.
    Clean Up Computer Settings in Chrome

Chrome may take some time to detect and notify you of potential threats, depending on the amount of data on your system. You should run this cleaning at least once a month to stay protected.

7. Use Guest Account on Shared Network

Consider carefully where you are using and syncing your Google account. Don't use it on a shared computer, as you'll unknowingly give others access to your synced data. If you must use a shared network, use a guest account to avoid compromising your security.

8. Don't Let Incognito Mode Fool You

You should not assume that you are completely protected while using Google's Incognito mode. Chrome won't store your history while browsing in Incognito mode, but Google, your network service provider as well as websites you'll be visiting, can still track your activity.

RELATED: Is Incognito Mode Completely Secure?

Keep Your Browser Protected

Tips covered in the article make your online presence more secure. You should, however, always use unique passwords for different websites. Other essential tips include using VPNs while visiting insecure networks or websites, and turning off the saving password feature in Chrome.

Last but not least, perform regular offline scans with anti-virus software, such as Microsoft Defender, to keep your system clean and virus-free.

MUO – Feed