Google has announced that starting with the Chrome 111 update, it has turned down its “Chrome Cleanup Tool”, an application distributed to Chrome users on Windows to help find and remove unwanted software (UwS). The Chrome Cleanup Tool was introduced back in 2015 to help users recover from unexpected settings changes, and to detect and remove UwS, the tech giant said in a security blogpost on Wednesday. Also Read - Gmail hacks: How to change your name, other details in Google account
Till now, this tool has performed more than 80 million cleanups, helping to pave the way for a cleaner and safer web. The tech giant claimed that Chrome user complaints about UwS have continued to fall over the years, averaging out to around 3 per cent of total complaints in the last year. Also Read - Applications open for seventh batch of Google startups accelerator India
“Starting in Chrome 111, users will no longer be able to request a Chrome Cleanup Tool scan through Safety Check or leverage the ‘Reset settings and cleanup’ option offered in chrome://settings on Windows,” it added. Also Read - Google redesigns Drive to for a better tablet experience
The company also removed the component in the Chrome that periodically scans Windows machines and prompts users for cleanup if it finds anything suspicious. Even without the Chrome Cleanup Tool, users are automatically protected by “Safe Browsing” in Chrome.
Users can also turn on “Enhanced protection” by going to chrome://settings/security. “While we’ll miss the Chrome Cleanup Tool, we wanted to take this opportunity to acknowledge its role in combating UwS for the past 8 years,” the tech giant said.
“We’ll continue to monitor user feedback and trends in the malware ecosystem, and when adversaries adapt their techniques again — which they will– we’ll be at the ready,” it added.