Google is experimenting with hiding full website addresses
Google recently began testing a new change to full URLs in Chrome Dev/Canary 85. The change hides part of the website address and shortens what is viewed down to the actual website domain name. For example https://rhynonetworks.com/blog/, would just show https://rhynonetworks.com.
Google responded to criticism of the change on their bug tracker forum, saying “We think this is an important problem area to explore because phishing and other forms of social engineering are still rampant on the web and much research shows that browsers’ current URL display patterns aren’t effective defenses. We’re implementing this simplified domain display experiment so that we can conduct qualitative and quantitative research to understand if it helps users identify malicious websites more accurately.”
While there doesn’t seem to be any studies on the issue that state shortening URLs helps deter fraud, it will be interesting to see the results returned from Google’s experiment.
Google has an opt-out mechanism that is already presently available on the address bar when it is right-clicked. Google has confirmed that the option to opt-out will stay available indefinitely.
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