Chrome for iOS: Google tests private tab locking using biometrics




Tabs opened in Incognito mode would only be accessible after authentication by Touch ID or by Face ID facial recognition.

Google will soon bring a little more security to its private navigation system.



A not so incognito mode on iPhone and iPad

The Incognito mode of Google Chrome allows, as on many web browsers, to go on the Internet without recording the various sites in the history. Cookies are also not stored during the browsing session.

The downside of this mode is that tabs open in private browsing remain open even after the device is put to sleep. While this isn't much of an issue on iPhone, it is much more of an iPad used by the whole family.

Google has decided to look into this issue and is currently testing a new way to protect Incognito Mode on iOS and iPadOS devices with the browser version 89 beta.



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Face ID and Touch ID used to protect private web sessions

The search engine will take advantage of the biometric identification systems of Apple mobile devices, the Touch ID fingerprint sensor and Face ID facial recognition present on the latest iPhones.

When a user opens the Chrome app, the address and content of the private browsing tabs will be blurred and the browser will require authentication to access them. A period of 15 minutes will be applied to avoid asking the user systematically to identify himself if he leaves the browser for a few moments for another application.

This feature is currently only available to certain testers, who must go to the privacy settings of Google Chrome to activate it. The public version of Google Chrome 89 is expected for the month of March.

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