Here is why you must update your Google Chrome browser ASAP

Crucially, updating Chrome to the latest versions addresses a critical security flaw (CVE-2023-7024)
A person using Google Chrome browser on laptop. — Unsplash
A person using Google Chrome browser on laptop. — Unsplash

For Google Chrome users seeking enhanced safety and performance, updating the desktop browser to its latest version is a must. In a recent blog post, Google revealed new features geared towards flagging potential threats and optimising memory usage within the browser.

Among the updates is the introduction of Safety Check, a built-in tool that actively monitors various security aspects. This tool serves to alert users if their stored passwords have been compromised in a data breach, identify potentially harmful installed extensions, and highlight site permissions that demand attention.

Notably, the latest Chrome update automates Safety Check, running it in the background to proactively notify users of any potential security risks. Additionally, Safety Check facilitates the revocation of permissions from dormant sites, enabling users to disable location tracking or microphone usage.

Moreover, this tool identifies excessive notifications from infrequently visited sites, offering users a quick option to disable these notifications. While Safety Check remains available for manual use, it now operates automatically alongside manual activation.

On the performance front, Google has reinforced the Memory Saver tool, targeting a reduction in Chrome's system memory consumption, particularly when handling multiple tabs. Activating Memory Saver allows the browser to free up memory from inactive tabs, ensuring responsiveness in active tabs.

Recent updates have introduced the ability to view the memory usage of individual tabs by hovering over them. Users can now easily designate specific sites to remain consistently active in a tab, further enhancing customisation options.

Enabling Memory Saver involves accessing Settings, navigating to the Performance section, and activating the Memory Saver switch. Users can also specify sites to always remain active within these settings.

Crucially, updating Chrome to the latest versions — 20.0.6099.129 for Mac and Linux and 120.0.6099.130 for Windows — addresses a critical security flaw (CVE-2023-7024). This fix addresses a heap buffer overflow vulnerability in the WebRTC component, previously exploited by threat actors to crash the browser or execute malicious code.

Looking ahead, Chrome's forthcoming updates include the ability to save Tab groups for access on other devices and a promise of smarter, more assistive features in early 2024, leveraging Google's AI-powered Gemini model.