G-Mail Users Will Soon Have To Use New Design

<img class=”alignnone size-full wp-image-7970 alignleft” src=”https://www.securepc-wi.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/gmail-resized.jpg” alt=”” width=”300″ height=”225″ />Change is coming, and not everyone is happy about it.  Recently, Google redesigned its G-mail interface, and since then, they’ve allowed their free users to opt into the new changes.  G-Suite users may or may not see the option to try the new interface, depending on whether their administrators have enabled the option and made it visible.

The company just announced that beginning in July, 2018, administrators will be required to give all users the ability to opt into the new interface.  Then, sometime in September 2018, all users will be switched to the new interface by default, although the option to switch back to the old interface will be available for approximately one month.  After that, the option to use the old interface will vanish, and all G-Suite users will only be able to use G-Mail using the new interface.

The company has not made any official announcement regarding users who have free G-Mail accounts. However, most industry insiders expect that given the timetable outlined above for G-Suite users, free G-Mail users can expect an email or other communication from Google about when the option to use the old interface will be going away for good.  Ultimately, Google means for everyone to use their new interface design, and will certainly enforce that.

Google’s handling of the change has been exceptional.  Change comes to us all, and in business, sometimes it can descend at a terrifying pace.  Only by slowing things down to a more human scale can you give your employees time to adapt and grow accustomed to the coming change.

Kudos to Google for a job well done, and business owners, take note.  Change may be inevitable, but it doesn’t have to be scary.  Just give your employees time to get used to the idea.

Google Cracking Down On 3rd Party Browser Extension Installs

Malicious code can wind up on your PC or phone by any number of roads.  Companies do their best to guard the digital passes, but invariably, things get missed and the hackers find a way in.  It’s a constant battle, and sadly, one that the good guys are losing.

Recently Google has stepped up its efforts, this time by focusing on Chrome browser extensions installed by third parties.  By the end of the year, no extensions will be allowed on Chrome except for those acquired via the Web Store.

James Wagner, Google’s Product Manager for the Extensions Platform, had this to say on the topic:

“We continue to receive large volumes of complaints from users about unwanted extensions causing their Chrome experience to change unexpectedly – and the majority of these complaints are attributed to confusing or deceptive uses of inline installation on websites.”

It’s a thorny problem, but industry experts broadly agree that Google is taking the right approach here.  Beginning in September, Google plans to disable the “inline installation” feature for all existing extensions.  The user will instead be redirected to the Chrome Web Store where they’ll have the option to install the extension straight from the source.

Then, in December 2018, the company will remove the inline install API from Chrome 71, which should solve the problem decisively.

Of course, hackers being hackers will no doubt find a way around that, but kudos to Google for taking decisive action here.  While browser extensions aren’t a major attack vector, it’s troublesome enough that Google’s attention is most welcome.

It should be noted that one of the indirect benefits of Google’s plan is that it further bolsters the importance of user ratings of extensions.  They’re highly visible on the Web Store, so anyone who’s considering installing something has a good, “at-a-glance” way of telling whether the extension is good or a scam. That’s information they wouldn’t get had the extension been installed inline.

Again, kudos to Google!