Depending on your surfing habits, chances are you’ve come across a warning in Chrome that tells you that it’s probably safer not to proceed to whatever site you wanted to look at. That’s Google’s Safe Browsing technology at work, and over the next few weeks, the company plans to roll out a number of improvements to this service.
This means you’ll see more Safe Browsing warnings than ever before, simply because Google has become better at finding sites that harbor malware, unwanted software and phishing attacks.
Over the last few months, Google has put its focus on ad injectors, the kind of applications that insert ads into pages that didn’t previously have them (or replace existing ones). These ad-injection networks are often vectors for malware attacks. Ideally, Safe Browsing will prevent unsuspecting users from installing these ad injectors on their computers.
As recently as May of this year, Google said that Safe Browsing — which is also being used by Firefox and Safari — showed 5 million warnings per day and discovered over 50,000 malware sites and over 90,000 phishing sites per month (though these numbers seem to fluctuate quite widely throughout the year). In the last week of June, just under 15 million people saw these warnings, but given that Google felt the need to announce these changes, chances are the number of people who will see them in the coming weeks will increase significantly.
You can keep track of Google’s stats here.