Is Google Chrome your browser of choice? If it is, then you’ve probably noticed some changes recently, with the browser offering to check the status of your saved passwords to see if they’ve been compromised.
Google has made some excellent moves in recent months designed to bolster the security of everyone who uses their products, and the company is poised to take another step in that direction.
They’re currently working on a new feature that will highlight weak passwords you’re using and prompt you to change them to make your accounts more secure.
The root of the issue here is that if you use a password that can be easily guessed, then it can also easily be cracked via brute force methods. Hackers have automated routines that allow them to try the most commonly used weak passwords in a matter of seconds, and if you’re using one of those, it’s child’s play for even a relatively unskilled hacker to gain access to your accounts.
While the new feature isn’t ready for Prime Time yet, if you want an early look at the shape of things to come, you can download and install Chrome Canary. Once you do, type “Chrome://flags” into the address bar and press enter.
Then, search for the ‘weak’ and enable the ‘Safety check for weak passwords’ and ‘Passwords weakness check’ flags.
Once these flags are enabled, you’ll need to close and restart the browser in order for the changes to take effect. After you do that, you can go to Settings and you’ll see a “Safety Check” option, with “Check Now” nested beneath it. Click that and it will check all of your stored passwords.
It’s a good feature and well worth checking out. Note, however, that Google has not given any indication when this new feature might make its way into the stable build.