Google has confirmed plans to add HTTPS-First Mode to its Chrome browser starting in version M94 and is re-examining the lock icon that browsers usually show when a website loads over HTTPS.
The idea is to protect people from having their information leaked to eavesdroppers who can’t intercept data shared over HTTPS. The HTTPS-First Mode will attempt to upgrade all page loads to HTTPS and display a warning before loading sites that don’t support it. Based on feedback, Google may decide to make HTTPS-First the default mode for all Chrome users.
Google is also reconsidering the lock icon that typically appears in the browser when a website loads over HTTPS. People often associate this icon with a website being trustworthy, its research shows, but a secure connection does not necessarily mean a website itself is safe. Only 11% of survey respondents knew the meaning of the lock icon, Google reported in a blog post.
Chrome isn’t the only browser doubling down on HTTPS. Mozilla introduced HTTPS-Only mode in Firefox 83, a version of its browser that rolled out late last year. HTTPS-Only mode tries to create fully secure connections to every website and requests user permissions before connecting to a site that does not support HTTPS.
Read the full Chromium blog post for more information.
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