Google Sends Warning To Billions Of People About Increasing Attacks

( Last week, Google warned those who use its Chrome web browser to expect a rise in cyberattacks in the coming months.

In a blog post on Thursday, Chrome’s Security Team member Adrian Taylor wrote that in light of increasing reports of “in-the-wild” exploits detected by Google’s researchers, Chrome users should be aware of software vulnerabilities that are being actively used by cybercriminals to hack into Chrome and attack users.

The increase in cyberattacks, however, could just be because Google’s Chrome has improved how it detects such exploitations of software bugs. Taylor writes that this might be good news as Google can respond to attacks quicker by providing “bug fixes” to users more quickly while also learning how the cyber attackers operate.

According to Taylor, the number of “in-the-wild exploits” discovered by Google researchers tripled between 2019 and last year. Part of that is Google Chrome enjoyed a dramatic rise in popularity during the same time. And with more people using Chrome, there is more potential for cyberattacks.

But the increase in “in-the-wild exploits” is also due to the increased complexity of browsers as computers and devices become smarter. Taylor wrote that to break through Chrome’s defenses, hackers increasingly need to launch multiple attacks because the Chrome security team separated running programs so attacks can’t spread from one vulnerable part of the browser to another.

In short, the hackers have to find more bugs in the software than they used to.

Chrome is accelerating its release of cycles to attempt to cut the time between the discovery of an “in-the-wild” exploit and its patch launch. So far, that gap in time has been reduced from 35 days to an average of 18 days. Google hopes to have that gap time reduced even further in the future.