Google Chrome users should soon be able to connect to the Internet more securely than ever after an important announcement HTTPS security update for the browser.
With Mozilla already announcing that Firefox will change to include an HTTPS-only mode, Google has now followed suit by announcing that Chrome is getting a new HTTPS-First mode.
The new feature will be added to Chrome 94, which is scheduled to launch in September, but you can give it a try now.
To begin with, the function will try to establish a connection to a site using the HTTPS protocol. If this is not possible, Chrome will display a full screen warning that the connection is not secure. Google says Chrome’s HTTPS-First mode security update will be optional to start with. However, it can become the default depending on the feedback it receives.
Although the official release is not planned until Chrome, anyone running the Canary version of Chrome 93 can try HTTPS-First mode right now. Get started by going to chrome: // flags / # https-only-mode-setting, enabling the flag and restarting the browser. If you then visit Settings in Chrome, you will find a new option Always use secure connections in advanced security settings.
In addition to the arrival of HTTPS-First mode, Google is also introducing a new icon in Chrome to indicate when an HTTPS connection is being used. At the moment, you will see a lock on the far left of the address bar whenever you visit a secure site, but Google found that very few people knew what this icon was supposed to convey.
With this in mind, the company is experimenting with replacing the lock with a “more neutral” down arrow that can be used to access privacy and security information about the current site. When visiting a site that does not have an HTTPS certificate, the same Not secure indicator will be displayed.
If you want to enable this new indication method now, make sure you have Chrome 93 installed, visit chrome: // flag / # omnibox-updated-connection-security-flags. Use the drop-down menu to enable the settings, and then restart Chrome.
In recent years, there has been a constant move from regular HTTP to HTTPS online. The encryption and additional security that HTTPS offers help protect against eavesdropping, and there has been a push to make the protocol the preferred online standard.