Google Chrome is targeting websites that don’t respect the ‘back’ button

A future version of the Google Chrome browser will clamp down on websites that engage in a little monkey business when it comes to the ‘back’ button.

The firm is working on a tool that would prevent websites resisting the back button’s traditional functionality in order to prevent users from leaving the site, in a tactic Google calls “history manipulation.”

Some code spied within the Chromium project, upon which Google Chrome is based, suggests the Google will stop websites adding items to the ‘back/forward list without the user’s intention.’

In that instance, Chrome will flag these pages, before sending metrics for analysis to Google. However, eventually, Chrome will then skip those entries to the back/forward list, in order to ensure the user experiences proper functionality.

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“Entries that are added to the back/forward list without the user’s intention
are marked to be skipped on subsequent back button invocations,” one item of code reads.

The code calling for the intervention when Chrome flags the abuse says reads: “Implements history manipulation intervention behind a flag and based on the should_skip_on_back_forward_ui field added earlier.”

The feature is likely to be available in testing sooner rather than later, with those hoping to put it to the test enabling a test flag. According to 9to5Google, it’s likely this feature will be available within the amusingly-named Chrome Canary browser soon.

Google’s newest Chrome fears are largely geared towards eliminating websites’ bad behaviour.

The company is clamping down on fake play buttons that redirect users without their permission. Google is also telling sites that it will block all ads to sites that serve abusive ads. It is also naming and shaming websites that don’t offer HTTPS security.

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