What is Google Safe Browsing, how to turn off or turn on Safe Browsing?


What is Google Safe Browsing?

Google Chrome has an inbuilt transparent protection service for Chrome users and Google webmasters. The Safe Browsing service is a free and transparent protection for Google products that warns users for phishing web pages, web pages that contain or offer malware, and website containing harmful programming code. 

Google Safe Browsing

How does Google Safe Browsing work?

The Google security team is real-time updating the Safe Browsing database with the latest threats for the protection of the web pages indexed in the Google search engine and the Chrome users that use Chrome as their browser on any device.

According to Google, the Safe browsing protection discovers more than a 1000 new web pages with unsafe content every day. Most of the discovered unsafe web pages are legitimate web pages that are somehow compromised and contain malicious programming code that could harm the device or the browser. Google explains the webmaster their web page contains harmful code and serves the webmaster tips how to clean their web pages and have the web pages indexed again.

Google Safe browsing makes difference in two kinds of harmful web page categories, the malware web pages, and the phishing web pages.

Google Safe Browsing & malware web pages

Malware is an umbrella term for all malicious code and applications designed to harm the device in any form. The malware web pages Google Safe browsing protects users for may include malicious programming code that downloads malware on to the user’s device and steals personal information for revenue or ransomware. Safe browsing also protects users against malware web pages that offer legitimate downloads services and bundle these downloads with adware and potentially unwanted programs.

Google Safe Browsing warns the user against these web pages with a warning “This site ahead contains harmful programs

Google Safe Browsing & phishing web pages

Phishing web pages are false web pages trying to deceive the user into providing cybercriminals the user’s personal information. Phishing is an attempt to obtain sensitive information from unaware users, for example; login credentials, passwords, social security numbers or a simple e-mail address for spam.

Phishing web pages impersonate an e-mail service provider, a bank, credit card company and computer companies such as Microsoft. The Microsoft Tech Support scams are also a phishing attempt to obtain sensitive information from humans. Learn more about Phishing, malvertising and how to prevent Phishing.

Google Safe browsing

How to turn off Google Safe browsing

Whenever the user would like to disable Google Safe browsing “Protect you and your device from dangerous sites.” for any reason, follow these steps to disable Safe browsing in the Google Chrome browser.

Open the Chrome menu in the right top corner (the three vertical dots), and select Settings. In the search bar type: security.
Uncheck: Protect you and your device from dangerous sites.

disable google safe browsing

How to turn on Google Safe browsing

The same steps apply to turn on Google Safe browsing, also known as “Protect you and your device from dangerous sites.”. Open the Google Chrome menu, scroll down to Settings, in the search bar type: security and CHECK the option, Protect you and your device from dangerous sites.

turn on google safe browsing

Google Safe Browsing products

The Safe browsing protection by Google is included in the following products on a variety of devices.

  • Offcourse the Chrome browser itself and all Chromium projects are protected with Safe Browsing.
  • Android devices. Safe browsing warns Android users if they download an application that is flagged by Safe browsing as dangerous or harmful.
  • Google Search engine. In the Google Search results, users may see a warning, This site may harm your computer, a web page containing the warning is known to download and install malicious applications on your device. Webmasters are notified and should clean their web page first before the warning disappears from the Google Search results. If you think a web page contains malicious applications or code you can report the website here. The protection is based on the StopBadWare project.
  • Google Ads (Adsense, Adwords). The Google security team apply the Safe browsing protection to make sure the Google ads do not serve malicious code or malicious web pages on publishers that serve Google Adsense on their internet website.
  • Google Mail (Gmail). Gmail is identifying every link in an e-mail to make sure the link is not dangerous and does not lead to dangerous web pages. If the link is dangerous, google safe browsing shows a warning to the user.

Google Safe browsing overview

More information about Google’s protection service, Safe browsing can be found on the Safe browsing overview web page: https://transparencyreport.google.com/safe-browsing/overview.
The overview web page shows Safe browsing statistics, more information about how Google identifies harmful web pages and how you the user can help Google create a safer web experience for everyone!

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