Google Beefs Up Security In Chrome

Previous versions of the browser would let users know when they were about to visit a malicious web site. The latest update would analyze executable files, such as .exe or .msi, and recommend discarding them, if they are found to be malicious. The browser would give the same advice for files a user is trying to download from a site with a reputation for drive-by malware.

"We’re starting small with this initial beta release, but we’ll be ramping up coverage for more and more malicious files in the coming months," Dominic Hamon, a Google software engineer, said on the company's blog.

The feature is not unique. Other browsers, such as Mozilla Firefox and Microsoft Internet Explorer, have a similar feature, which is also found in anti-virus software from major vendors.

One such vendor, Sophos, tested the Chrome beta and said that it failed to detect a handful of malware. "We shouldn't be too quick to read too much into Chrome's failure in this very limited test," Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at Sophos, said Monday in the company's blog.

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Because the latest version of Chrome is in beta, it's likely to get better detection for more malware once the final version is released, Cluley said.