Chrome 102 patches up critical security flaw and adds a truly useful feature

Good news for Chrome users: Google is rolling out a new version of its browser that fixes 32 security flaws -- and adds a few new features.

A stable version of Chrome 102 will arrive on Windows, Mac, and Linux computers in the coming weeks if you haven’t gotten it already. The security fixes were all reported by users and range across different degrees of severity, from critical to low.

Critical severity

The critical flaw is listed as “CVE-2022-1853: Use after free in Indexed DB.” Unfortunately, Google doesn’t state what this means, but the cybersecurity firm MalwareBytes has supplied some explanations.

According to MalwareBytes (opens in new tab), IndexedDB is an interface that stores a lot of user data for the browser. There was a bug in Chrome that could have given a bad actor access to loads of personal information. MalwareBytes surmises someone could potentially create a malicious website to manipulate IndexedDB and take over a person’s browser.

The firm goes on to briefly give examples of the other flaws. High severity may have allowed bad actors the ability to “execute [malicious] code” and gain access, Medium severity gave the ability to manipulate a limited amount of information, and Low severity refers to random bugs that didn’t do much but were still a security problem.

New Chrome features

The strange thing about Chrome’s new features is that none of them are in the May 24 patch notes. To even be aware of them, you had to scour Google developer blogs or the random Reddit thread.

We were able to confirm three new features:

There are potentially other new features coming out. According to a Chromium blog post from late April, Chrome 102 is slated to have a control overlay for desktop apps.

It is strongly recommended that you download the latest version of Chrome so you'll have the security fixes in place.

To do this, click on the three dots in the upper right-hand corner of your Chrome browser and then select Help.

From there, select About Google Chrome, which will take you to the browser’s Settings where version 102 is ready for download.

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