By now you probably know that you should exercise caution when installing new programs on your computer. But savvy web users know that the same applies to web browser extensions – which are, in a way, just smaller programs on a more specific platform. Such is the case with a series of five Chrome browser extensions that Google recently removed from its official Chrome Web Store repository.
Extensions that hijack browsers to plaster the web with even more ads are nothing new. It’s the fact that these extensions appeared on the Chrome Web Store, apparently with Google’s seal of approval, that allowed them to affect such a wide range of users. You can warn users to be careless all you want, but if Google hosts the extensions and presents them directly to users, the company bears some of the blame. But initial testing and analysis can’t do much, especially when popular extensions may be sold to less scrupulous new owners.
The affected extensions are “Netflix Party”, “Netflix Party 2”, “FlipShope – Price Tracker Extension”, “Full Page Screenshot Capture – Screenshotting” and “AutoBuy Flash Sales”. If any of them are on your Chrome browsers or Chrome OS devices, remove them now.