Google Chrome 67 Site Isolation Feature

Google Updates Chrome Browser with New Site Isolation Feature

Google has by default enabled a security feature called “Site Isolation” in its web browser with the release of Chrome 67 for all desktop users.

This feature enabled Chrome to be better guarded against vulnerabilities and will help protect against many online threats, including Spectre and Meltdown attack; this does however apparently come at the cost of ram usage.

Spectre and Meltdown are fundamental hardware level issues that impact nearly every modern microprocessor. They leave hardware open to a kind of attack known as a speculative execution side-channel.

This vulnerability essentially allows attackers to access data in memory that they normally should not be able to access.

Researchers from Google’s Project Zero were among the first to announce the vulnerabilities. Spectre gives attackers a way to use an open browser tab on a user’s desktop to read or access data in another open browser tab.

In theory, at least, the owner of a malicious web site could exploit Spectre to steal information from other websites.

Ever since January, Google has been slowly enabling Site Isolation by default for more and more users, testing how it affected the browser’s performance.

This new security feature aims to combat Spectre and adds an additional security boundary between websites by ensuring that different sites are always put into separate processes, isolated from each other.

Since each individual site in the browser gets its own sandboxed process, the new feature makes it much harder for untrusted/dangerous websites to access or steal information of your accounts on other websites.

Google is also investigating ways to extend the Site Isolation feature to Chrome for Android, its mobile platform “where there are additional known issues,” but Android users can enable the feature manually.

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