Chrome has made a name itself over the past decade. From its blazing-fast speeds to its integration with all things Google, it’s no wonder Google Chrome has taken the spotlight.
It’s far from secure, however. Chrome users would do well to take some time to secure their browser. Today, let’s go over six ways you can do just that.
1 Never Save Private Information to Chrome
The first thing you should do is make sure that as little personal information as possible is stored on your Google account. Most people who use Chrome probably have their Google accounts linked, and depending on your privacy settings, your Google account may be collecting tons of personal information.
Payment information, browsing activity, frequented sites, etc.: your Google account records everything. One trip into your account’s privacy settings, however, and you’ll be able to limit how much data Google collects and stores.
2 Encrypt Your Online Activity
After configuring your Google account, the next step is to make sure that all the data you enter or view on the browser is encrypted. In other words, you need to ensure that no third party can view, intercept, or sell any of your data, and the best way to do this is by encrypting your data.
To encrypt your browser data and activity, you’ll want a VPN for Chrome, which will actively encrypt any data you send out through Chrome (and your device in general). Therefore, your data will be secure and invisible to any third party.
3 Keep Google Chrome Updated
New malware is being developed every day, and it is up to software developers to frequently push out updates that protect their products from new malware. Google developers are no exception, so updates for Chrome are released at a rapid pace.
That said, not many people pay attention to the updates waiting to be installed on Chrome. Go ahead and make sure that your Chrome is updated to the latest edition. Doing so will tighten up the browser’s security and make it invulnerable to a slew of new malware.
4 Install an Anti-Tracking Extension
Rarely are you truly alone on the Internet. Wherever you are on the Internet, there are sites, advertisers, and corporations tracking every move you make, and these parties frequently use trackers to collect data regarding your online activity.
Extensions like Privacy Badger are designed to automatically disable online trackers and warn you of the type of trackers the website is using. One warning, though: Privacy Badger and other anti-trackers can mess with some website scripts, so whitelist any sites you find that is acting weird with the extension installed.
5 Enable an Ad-Blocker
In an ideal world, online advertisements would be nothing more than static images pushing a harmless product. If you clicked on them, they would take you to the product page. However, the current Internet climate allows for push ads, pop-up ads, and ads that, if clicked on, take you to a page that’ll infect your device with a virus faster than you can exit the page.
A simple way to avoid these advertisements is to install an ad-blocker on Chrome. Good options are uBlock Origin and AdBlock Plus (avoid if possible), both of which will block most advertisements except for sites that have found workarounds (like Twitch. tv).
6 Scan Your Device With an Anti-Malware/Anti-Virus Program
Even with you giving your best to prevent any malware or viruses from infecting your Chrome browser, it can still happen—viruses and malware can still get through. However, knowing when your browser (and device, as a result) is infected is difficult without an anti-malware/anti-virus program.
Spyware, viruses, PUPs, and more can hide in your browser for days, weeks, or months before being detected. Performing routine scans with an anti-malware program, however, will catch them before they can do any serious damage. Both Windows and macOS come with free anti-virus solutions, and there are free, reputable anti-malware programs ready to be downloaded.
Despite being the most popular Internet browser, Google Chrome suffers from various security issues, including security controversies from Google itself. Fortunately, there are more than a few ways you can secure your Chrome browser, from an anti-malware program to limiting how much information you store on your Google account.