Yandex launches Chromium-based Web browser with security extras

Chromium-based Yandex Browser features process sandboxing, a file scanner from Kaspersky Lab and Opera's Turbo technology

Russian Internet services and Web search company Yandex released its own browser on Monday, following a similar move by competitor Mail.ru last week.

The new Yandex Browser is largely based on Chromium, the open-source browser that serves as the foundation for Google Chrome. As a result, it uses the WebKit browsing engine and Google's V8 JavaScript engine.

In addition, Yandex Browser has Chromium's tab process separation and process sandboxing features and also includes Adobe's Flash Player plug-in and a PDF viewer from Foxit Software.

Both the Flash Player plug-in and the PDF viewer are sandboxed, Vladimir Isaev, Yandex's manager of international media relations, said Monday via email.

However, the Yandex Browser development team didn't borrow everything from the Chromium project. For example, instead of using Google's Safe Browsing API (application programming interface) for malicious URL blocking, the Yandex Browser relies on a similar technology developed by Yandex and used on its Web search service to flag malicious search results.

"We do have our own security platform that lets us check more than 20 million Web pages daily and finds about 2,000 new hosts containing malware," Isaev said. "As a search engine we notify users about potential vulnerabilities on our search result pages (actually we show about 5 million alerts daily)."

Yandex has also partnered with Russian antivirus vendor Kaspersky Lab to integrate a file scanner into the browser. The component checks all downloaded files against a list of known malicious files that gets updated over the Internet, Isaev said.

"Yandex integrated Kaspersky SafeStream II technology which includes a set of AV [antivirus] signatures designed to protect against the most dangerous and widespread malware," said Konstantin Matyukhin, Kaspersky Lab's account manager for technology alliances, via email. "These AV signatures are used to scan every file which is downloaded through the browser. Thus it creates an additional layer of protection for a PC."

"We believe security is a big focus for all developers today," Isaev said. As more users come to the Internet, more malware is being created, he said.

Aside from security, the Yandex Browser development team also took performance aspects into consideration. In order to help users with slow Internet connections, Yandex incorporated Opera's Turbo technology into the new browser.

When Opera Turbo is enabled, the browser's HTTP requests -- not the HTTPS (HTTP Secure) ones -- are passed through proxy servers operated by Opera. The servers then download the requested pages, compress them and serve smaller versions of those pages back to the browser. Opera Turbo has been a feature in the Opera browser since 2009.

As expected, Yandex Browser was built specifically to promote and provide easy access to Yandex's services, which include Web search, email, maps, cloud-based storage and more. Yandex's main market is Russia, but the company also operates in Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Belarus and Turkey.

Yandex Browser can run on Windows or Max OS X and its default language is Russian. The browser's language can also be switched to English, but that's mostly to accommodate Russian-speaking users who prefer their software user interfaces in English, Isaev said.

Late last week, Russian Internet services company Mail.ru, one of Yandex's primary competitors, launched Amigo, a Chromium-based Web browser that focuses on better integration with social media websites. Mail.ru also offers a more general-purpose Chromium-based browser called "Internet."

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Lucian Constantin

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

PC World Evaluation Team Review - MSI GT75 TITAN

"I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it."

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?