Google is testing a new privacy feature for its Chrome browser on iOS. The feature, which is currently in beta, can lock incognito tabs behind Touch and Face ID. The incognito tabs will be blurred out in the tab switcher until the user confirms their identity.
Apple’s facial and fingerprint recognition is used to secure an iPhone or iPad but many apps also offer their own biometrics support for a layer of extra security. The feature should arrive for regular users in the coming months.
Google Chrome beta on iOS uses biometrics to keep your incognito tabs private
Update notes for the latest Chrome 89 beta on iOS reveal that “when you return to the Chrome app, your incognito tabs will be blurred until you confirm it’s you.” Users can enable this feature in the privacy tab of Chrome’s settings. However, since the feature is in early testing, not every beta tester will have access to it.
Google Drive also offers a similar privacy feature that requires users to authenticate themselves via biometrics every time they open the app. However, there is an option to delay the authentication by 10 seconds, one minute, or 10 minutes when multitasking.
The feature is a smart way to make sure your incognito tabs stay private if your device is in the hands of someone else. However, it is important to note that while these tabs may not show up in your browsing history, they might still be exposed to the prying eyes of other people.
As noted by 9to5Google, Google has been holding back new versions of several of its iOS apps because of Apple’s privacy labels push so the feature may not be available for all beta users just yet. Chrome 89 is expected to be released in early March, but we do not know if support for biometrics authentication will be ready in time.