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Google Chrome Experiment To Hide URLs

 11:11 am on May 6, 2014 (gmt 0)

This is something i'm not keen on, especially where it's an unknown site.

Jake Archibald, a "developer advocate" for Chrome at Google, has blogged about how the "Canary" version of Chrome is now hiding parts of the URL in order to make phishing attacks more obvious to the user. Canary is an experimental version, used to test new features like this. The feature may or may not make it into release versions of Chrome.Google Chrome Experiment To Hide URLs [zdnet.com]



 2:31 am on May 8, 2014 (gmt 0)

Opera has done that for a while. You had to click in the URL box to see the full URL. I admit I'm not a fan either. I don't mind as long as advanced users can turn it off.


 3:55 am on May 8, 2014 (gmt 0)

Safari seems to be heading the same way. It has definitely joined FF-- boo, hiss-- in leaving off the protocol.

If I read the article very, very slowly and carefully, will I understand how showing less information can enable the user to become more informed?


 3:37 pm on May 8, 2014 (gmt 0)

When I read the summary above, my first thought was "that makes no sense! How can hiding parts of the URL make phishing attacks MORE obvious?" After reading the article and seeing the examples, though, it does make some sense to me, but I still feel like there might be a better approach.

For example, just breaking up the protocol, host, and path into visually distinct blocks within the URL bar, with an emphasis on the host. That way, all of the information is still visible. Here's a very rough example of what I'd think that would look like:

(Note, this was just a quick POC, not what I would actaully expect it to look like)

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