Google rolling out an "Android safe browsing" feature for apps on Galaxy and Pixel devices

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Google rolling out an "Android safe browsing" feature for apps on Galaxy and Pixel devices
If you use a Samsung Galaxy or Google Pixel phone, you will now be able to benefit from a new "Android Safe Browsing" feature within your apps. This new tool is yet another Android security boost in Google's arsenal against increasingly sneaky malware and phishing scams.

As explained by Android expert Mishaal Rahman on his post uncovering the feature, "Android Safe Browsing alerts you to security threats, like harmful links and webpages, when you browse within supported apps. For example, you might get an alert if you tap a link in your news app that would take you to a known phishing site." Essentially, its function is to add a layer of protection when tapping on a web link within an app.

If I had to compare it to something, it would be like the warnings you get in the Chrome browser when you're about to navigate to a dodgy link. Android Safe Browsing works similarly by tapping into Google's extensive database of known threats. At the moment, no apps appear for me under supported apps, suggesting that — as per Mishaal's observations — this requires apps to utilize the "SafetyNet" Safe Browsing API, which lets apps determine if a URL has been marked as a known threat by Google.

Image Source: Phone Arena

So far, this new feature has been spotted by navigating to Settings > Security & privacy > More security & privacy on Pixel devices and Settings > Security & Privacy on Samsung Galaxy devices. However, the roll-out seems to be phased and controlled by Google's servers, which would explain why not everyone has it yet.

Although this seems like a feature every Android phone should get, it is currently unclear whether this will a Pixel and Galaxy exclusive. Right now it looks like most phones using Google Play Services should eventually get this update, not just specific devices, so exclusivity is hopefully not an issue.
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