Google tightens restrictions on Chrome extensions

Most extensions for Windows and Mac will have to be installed from Google's Web Store

Google will require most extensions for its Chrome browser to be installed from its Web Store, a move intended to stop users from inadvertently installing malicious ones.

Google has gradually been changing its policy around extensions to prevent abuse. Last year, it mandated that all Chrome extensions for Windows be hosted in its store, wrote Jake Leichtling, an extensions platform product manager.

The change caused a 75 percent drop in requests from customers asking how to uninstall unwanted extensions, he wrote. It did not apply to the Windows developer channel, but hackers are now using that in order to install extensions, he wrote. Starting Wednesday, all extensions for Windows will have to be hosted in the store, and the same will apply to OS X in July.

Google automatically analyzes extensions for malicious behavior. Most are then published, although some may be held for manual review. It bans extensions that interfere with advertisements, for example, or are spammy.

For development purposes, Google will still allow extensions to be installed locally, as well as forced installs using a group policy for enterprises, Leichtling wrote.

To not disrupt users' experiences, Google also allows so-called inline installations, where a user appears to install an extension directly from a website, but it is actually hosted at the Web Store.

Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com. Follow me on Twitter: @jeremy_kirk

Join the newsletter!

Or
Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags securitybrowsersGooglesoftwareapplications

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jeremy Kirk

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

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.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?