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In brief: Even the most seasoned Internet user can end up on a phishing website without realizing it. All it takes is one accidental keystroke - adding an extra "l" to the end of paypal.com, for example - to wind up on a nefarious site that aims to steal your login details.
Crooks often use typo-squatted domains and homograph attacks to facilitate credential theft from unsuspecting individuals. It's a practice that Google is actively working to curb through its Chrome web browser.
Since the release of Chrome Canary 70, engineers have been testing a feature designed to detect lookalike URLs. It's accessible by entering the following into the URL bar:
The feature appears to be present in the latest stable release as well although according to CNET, it's not fully functional.
Chrome Canary is an experimental version of Chrome for early adopters.
When a suspicious URL is entered with the feature enabled, Chrome will present a dropdown asking if you really meant to access the URL in question.
"We designed this warning to be informational rather than scary," she Google Chrome engineer Emily Stark during a talk at the Enigma Conference on Tuesday.
No word yet on when the experimental measure will make its way to the stable release as an advertised feature.
Lead image courtesy Tetiana Yurchenko via Shutterstock