Made a typo? Google Chrome tests warning for lookalike URLs

Google Chrome is testing a way to help guide you away from a lookalike URL.

Image: Gokhan Balci/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Google Chrome has another solution to help users turn back from dodgy websites.

As spotted by ZDNet, it’s testing a way to spot lookalike URLs and help redirect users to go to the right place with the Chrome Canary browser, which is used to experiment with upcoming features.

You can switch on the experimental feature in Canary by entering chrome://flags/#enable-lookalike-url-navigation-suggestions in the address bar, and enabling it. 

From there, a dropdown will appear below the address bar if you’ve entered or clicked through to a lookalike URL, with a link to the correct version. 

It only applies to websites with a site engagement score, so we can imagine Chrome won’t step in if you’re trying to visit a niche website.

Image: mashable screenshot

While the option is available in the stable version of Chrome, it doesn’t appear to be functioning in our test.

Lookalike URLs aim to trick users by mimicking the name of a popular website or brand, and luring them to a questionable site which could be used for malware or phishing attacks.

These kinds of URLs have been steadily on the rise, as tricksters employ tactics like typosquatting and IDN homograph attacks to fool users.

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