Tackling the issue of Unwanted Downloads, Google Chrome may soon prevent such triggers from Ad Frames

If you are concerned about drive-by-downloads via ad frames which barely rely on user consent and activation, Google has got you covered! The tech giant is planning on introducing a new feature to Chrome which will stop such kind of downloads. These downloads initiate through a website’s advertisement slot.

If the reports of the feature being released soon are indeed true, then it will be a great news. It will help in increasing the security of the web and users alike.

Google, with the help of a design document, was also able to explain what an “ad frame” really is. Long story short, it is an iframe which Google considers as an advertisement (with the help of a Chromium ad detection set-up).

While many people will get happy knowing that unwanted downloads will be blocked, what’s even better is that many malicious drive-by-downloads will also be prevented. However, it should be noted that the downloads will be prevented as long as a user doesn’t interact with or click on the ad frames. Once they do, Chrome will give the ad frame a green signal to begin the download process.

Buttons such as “Download” will be set visible by the ads. In addition to that, there will not be any kind of warnings displayed before Chrome blocks an automatic download.
Related: Google Chrome aims to increase page-loading speed with new interface
One thing that should definitely be kept in mind is that the feature is expected to be included in all Chrome versions, excluding the iOS version, due to it being based on Safari’s engine (WebKit) instead of Chromium.

The release date of this feature is still unknown but there’s a high possibility that it will be rolled out before 2020. After all, it’s a part of Google’s new approach to resolve the issues caused by such downloads.

Google had already announced that Chrome would soon be able to block automatic file downloads via sandboxed iframes. Sandboxed iframes are normal HTML commands which can be used for hack attacks, in addition to displaying ads.


Photo: Stephen Shankland / Flickr

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