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Most people who use the internet already know that the padlock icon in the URL bar means that the site is secure, but you may not realise exactly what that means or how secure your connection really is with that padlock.

The padlock is a visual indication that your connection to the website has been secured using HTTPS. HTTPS, or Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure, is a version of the HTTP protocol that uses encryption to secure your data from prying eyes.

Encryption is a process of scrambling data with an encryption cipher and key so that it can only be read by using the decryption key. You can think of it as a lockbox, you can write a message, lock the box, and then only someone with the right key can open the box to read the message. This keeps your data secure from hackers trying to steal account details.

One key piece of information you should know is that the encryption and security of HTTPS only verifies that your connection to the website you typed in the URL bar is secure. It doesn’t imply that the website is secure, or even that it’s the website you meant to browse to. Many phishing and malware websites are moving to use HTTPS as it becomes more accessible, so it’s not safe to just trust any site that uses HTTPS.

Tip: A “phishing” website tries to trick you into submitting sensitive data, such as account information, by faking a legitimate login page. Links to phishing sites are often sent via email. Malware is a catch-all term for “Malicious software” it includes viruses, worms, ransomware, and more.

Note: You should never enter your username and password, or other sensitive information such as bank details over an insecure connection. Even if a site has the padlock and HTTPS, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still be careful with where you enter your details.

Chrome Developer Tools

In the security panel overview, there are three sections of information, Certificate, Connection, and Resources. These cover the details of the HTTPS certificate, the encryption used to secure the connection, and detail if any resources were served insecurely respectively.

Certificates

The certificate section states which certificate authority issued the HTTPS certificate, if it is valid and trusted, and allows you to view the certificate. Beyond verifying that the website you’re connecting to is run by the person who owns the URL, the certificate doesn’t directly affect the security of your connection

Tip: HTTPS certificates work on a chain-of-trust system. A number of root certificate authorities are trusted to issue certificates to website owners, after they prove that they own the website. This system is designed to prevent hackers from being able to generate certificates for websites they don’t own, as these certificates won’t have the chain of trust back to a root certificate authority.

Connection

The “Connection” section details the encryption protocol, key exchange algorithm, and encryption algorithm used to encrypt your data. The encryption algorithm should ideally say “TLS 1.2” or “TLS 1.3”. TLS, or Transport Level Security, is the standard for negotiating encryption configurations.

TLS versions 1.3 and 1.2 are the current standards and are considered secure. TLS 1.0 and 1.1 are both in the process of being deprecated as they are old and have some known weaknesses, although they are still adequate security-wise.

Tip: Deprecated means that their use is being discouraged and steps are being taken to remove support.

The predecessors to TLS were SSLv3 and SSLv2. Almost nowhere supports either of these options anymore, because they have been deprecated due to being considered insecure since 2024 and 2011 respectively.

The next value is the key exchange algorithm. This is used to securely negotiate the encryption key to be used with the encryption algorithm. There are far too many to name, but they generally rely on a key agreement protocol called “Elliptic-curve Diffe-Hellman Ephemeral” or ECDHE. It is not possible to determine the agreed encryption key without using third-party network monitoring software and a deliberately weakened configuration. Explicitly not supporting access to this information in the browser means that it can’t be compromised by accident.

The final value in the Connection section is the cipher suite used to encrypt the connection. Once again there are far too many to name. Ciphers generally have multipart names that can describe the encryption algorithm used, the strength of the cipher in bits, and what mode is being used.

In the example of AES-128-GCM as seen in the screenshot above, the encryption algorithm is AES, or the Advanced Encryption Standard, the strength is 128-bits, and the Galois-Counter-Mode is being used.

Tip: 128 or 256 bits are the most common levels of cryptographic security. They mean that there 128 or 256 bits of randomness making up the encryption key being used. That’s 2^128 possible combinations, or two multiplied by itself 128 times. As with all exponentials, the numbers get very big, very fast. The number of possible 256-bit key combinations is roughly equal to some low-end estimates of the number of atoms in the observable universe. It is unimaginably difficult to correctly guess an encryption key, even with multiple supercomputers and centuries of time.

Resources

The resources section shows any page resources, such as images, scripts, and stylesheets, that were not loaded over a secure connection. If any resources were loaded insecurely this section will highlight red and provide a link to show the specific item or items in the network panel.

Ideally, all resources should be loaded securely as any insecure resource could be modified by a hacker without your knowledge.

More information

You can see more information on each domain and subdomain that were loaded by using the column on the left of the panel. These pages show roughly the same information as the overview although Certificate transparency information and some extra details from the certificates are shown.

Tip: Certificate Transparency is a protocol used to counter some historical abuses of the certificate issuing process. It is now a mandatory part of all newly issued certificates and is used to further verify that the certificate is legitimate.

The origin view allows you to look through each of the domains and subdomains that loaded content in the page, so you can review their specific security configurations.

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How To Check Links For Viruses In Google Chrome

If you frequent links but want to be sure that they are safe and virus-free, a handy Chrome extension called Dr. Web Link Checker can help you check links for viruses.

Dr. Web is an antivirus software, and this free extension checks links within a browser without necessarily installing the software. It uses the Dr. Web server that stores its virus databases when scanning for viruses from a specific web link.

Upon installing the extension, you will need to restart the browser.

When there is a threat or virus detected, the scan will show the result with a red “Infected” badge on the upper right corner of the window. At this point, you would want to close the window and not open the link.

For every second that you use the web, there are new viruses and malicious codes that are made. It’s always better to have a preventive measure rather than deal with the consequences of a virus attack.

For any user who is keen to protect his privacy and data when browsing unfamiliar websites, this extension is extremely helpful. Not only is it a good practice, it also helps you become more aware of which websites are safe and which ones to avoid.

Kim Barloso

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How To Check Password Leak With Google Chrome? – Webnots

Data breach has become more common even with big technology and internet companies. The only option for users is to have a strong password and change it frequently. This will help to protect your online accounts and safeguard the data. Earlier you have to get the data breach information and then change the password for that accordingly. However, nowadays browsers become smart and you can verify whether your passwords are leaked in data breach right within the browser. In this article, we will explain how to check your passwords leaked in breach with Chrome browser.

Password Security in Chrome Password Manager

Google Chrome offers a strong password manager to save all your login passwords and keep them safe. You can login to your Google account and synchronize the passwords across all your devices. The latest Chrome version offers an option in the password manager to check whether your passwords are compromised in any previous data leaks.

You can find the weak passwords and change them with strong passwords.

Chrome will send a notification when detecting a leaked password in your stored passwords.

Chrome will check the combination of username and password is leaked in any data breach and show the warning in the browser’s passwords section.

Google will not view your saved passwords from Chrome browser.

Prerequisites for Checking Password Leak in Chrome

In order to check password leak features in Chrome, you should enable the following settings:

Login to Google account – you must log into your Google account to get the details of compromised passwords in data breaches. This will not be available if you are using the browser without logging in. however, you can still get the weak passwords details even without logging in to your account.

Offer to save password – this enables Chrome to ask whether to save your passwords in the in-built password manager.

Safe browsing – you should enable safe browsing to see a warning for the passwords leaked in a data breach.

Getting notifications – you must be signed in to get notifications for password leak. Otherwise, you can see the details in Chrome.

Enable Safe Browsing in Chrome

Follow the below instructions to enable Safe Browsing option in Google Chrome:

Chrome Safe Browsing Options

Check Password Leak in Chrome

Chrome Password Settings Page

This will open Chrome password manager where you can see all your stored passwords along with website URLs and usernames. You will find few other options on the page and make sure the first option “Offer to save passwords” is enabled. This is the option allows Chrome to save your passwords and disabling this will stop Chrome from prompting you to save password in Chrome. However, all previously saved passwords will be retained and you can continue to use even after disabling this option.

Check Passwords for Leak in Data Breach

Here, you will see a list of compromised and weak passwords that you have stored in Chrome. As mentioned, you should sync your Chrome passwords with Google account to view the “Compromised passwords” details.

Check Weak and Compromised Passwords in Chrome

Changing Compromised and Weak Passwords

For each compromised or weak password, you can find couple of options to update the password.

Update Password on Website

Update Password Prompt in Chrome

Edit Password Directly in Chrome

Already Changed Password

Points to Note:

Unlike Microsoft Edge, Chrome will not suggest a strong password. Therefore, we recommend using a strong password generator tool to create your passwords first. We have a free online password generator tool that you can use for this purpose to generate a complex password with up to 50 characters length.

Strong Password Generator Tool

For editing or viewing passwords in Chrome, you need to provide the administrator password of your computer. Chrome will prompt to enter admin password multiple times for safety reasons.

Anyone having your computer’s admin password can view and export all passwords stored in Chrome. Therefore, avoid using common or public computers to store your passwords.

You’re Offline, Check Your Connection On Youtube

Some YouTube users have reported that they keep getting the You’re offline, Check your connection error message when trying to play YouTube videos. While the error clearly indicates that your internet is not working and you are offline, several users have reported being experiencing the error even with a working internet connection. Why does this error occur and how you can resolve it, let us find that out in this post.

Why does YouTube keep saying I am offline?

If you keep getting the You’re offline error message on YouTube, it is most likely that your internet is unstable. There might also be some other connectivity issues caused due to outdated or faulty network adapter drivers or DNS server inconsistency. Besides that, your browser’s cache and cookies data can be another reason for this error. Additionally, incorrect date and time configuration on your PC, problematic browser extensions, enabled VPN and adblockers can also cause this issue.

Fix You’re offline, Check your connection error on YouTube

If you keep seeing the You’re offline, Check your connection error on YouTube while trying to play videos, here are the solutions you can use to troubleshoot this error:

Refresh YouTube several times.

Test your internet connection.

Update network drivers.

Set up the correct date and time settings.

Clear browser cache and cookies.

Change your DNS server.

Disable third-party extensions or add-ons.

Turn off VPN and adblockers.

Update your web browser.

Switch to a different web browser.

1] Refresh YouTube several times

It could be a temporary glitch or issue causing the “You’re offline. Check your connection” error on YouTube. Hence, you can try reloading the YouTube page a couple of times by pressing the Retry button and see if the error is gone. Or, you can also hard refresh the YouTube page using the Ctrl+F5 hotkey and check if it helps. If the error persists, you can move on to the next troubleshooting method.

2] Test your internet connection

You can connect to some other network connection and then try visiting YouTube to see if the error is gone. Besides that, you can power cycle your router or reset it to rule out any possibility of router cache causing the error.

Read: Fix YouTube error, Something went wrong.

3] Update network drivers

Outdated or faulty network adapter drivers are known to cause network connectivity issues. Hence, make sure you have up-to-date network drivers to avoid errors like this. To update Network drivers on Windows 11/10, you can use the Settings app. Here’s how:

First, press Win+I to launch Settings and navigate to Windows Update.

Next, tick the checkboxes associated with the pending network driver updates and press the Download & install button.

Windows will restart when the process is done. You can then open YouTube in your browser and see if the error is fixed.

You can also download the latest network drivers directly from the device manufacturer’s website. Or, use the conventional method and update drivers using Device Manager.

See: How to fix No Sound on YouTube on Windows.

4] Set up the correct date and time settings

If the “You’re offline. Check your connection” error keeps appearing on YouTube, it might be the case that your date and time settings are incorrect. So, ensure that you have configured the correct date and time settings including time zone. Here’s how you can do that:

First, open Settings using Win+I.

Now, navigate to the Time & language tab from the left-side pane.

After that, turn on the toggles associated with the Set time automatically and Set time zone automatically options.

When done, reopen YouTube and check if the error has stopped appearing or not.

If this scenario is not applicable to you, move on to the next fix.

5] Clear browser cache and cookies

Your web browser cache and cookies can be the main culprit behind the “You’re offline. Check your connection” error on YouTube. Old and corrupted browser cache and cookies create several issues in web browsers. Hence, clear old browsing data including cache and cookies, and then restart your browser to check if the error is gone. Here, we are going to show steps to delete cache and cookies from Chrome, Firefox, and Edge. Similar steps can be followed in other browsers to clear browser cache and cookies.

These posts will show you how how to clear browsing data & cache in Edge, Opera or  Chrome and Firefox.

If deleting browsing data doesn’t help, you can use the next working solution to fix the error.

Read: Fix YouTube Error 400 on PC.

6] Change your DNS server

It could be an inconsistency with your default DNS server provided by your ISP triggering this error on YouTube. Hence, if the scenario is applicable, you can fix this error by switching to a public DNS server.

Google DNS is the top choice of users. It is more reliable and fast and has been proven to avoid such errors. Here are the steps to set up Google Public DNS on Windows 11/10:

Firstly, evoke the Run command box using Win+R and enter chúng tôi in it to open up the Network Connections window on your PC.

In the appeared Properties window, select the Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) option and then press the Properties button.

Preferred DNS server: 8.8.8.8 Alternate DNS server: 8.8.4.4

If the error continues, you can use the next troubleshooting method to fix it.

See: 500 Internal Server Error on YouTube explained.

7] Disable browser extensions or add-ons

The next thing you can do to fix the error is to disable or remove extensions/add-ons from your browser. There are many malicious or poorly-coded third-party web extensions that may cause errors and issues in your browsers. Hence, you can try disabling such extensions and see if the error is fixed.

These posts will show you how to disable browser extensions in Chrome, Firefox, Opera or Edge browser.

8] Turn off VPN and adblockers

If you are using a VPN (Virtual Private Network) client or proxy server while using YouTube on your PC, you might experience this error. Your VPN might be interfering with your internet and thus, causing this error. Hence, it is recommended to disable your VPN or proxy server and then see if the error is fixed.

Similarly, if you are using ad-blockers in your browser or computer, turn it off and see if the error has stopped on YouTube.

See: YouTube not connecting to AdSense; Error AS-08, AS-10 OR 500.

9] Update your web browser

If your browser is outdated, you might face errors like this. So, update your web browser and check if the error is fixed.

10] Switch to a different web browser

You can also try using a different web browser and see if you still receive the YouTube error. There are multiple free web browsers to select from. For example, if you are experiencing this error on Chrome, try using Firefox or Edge and see if the problem is fixed.

Hope this helps!

SUBSCRIBE: TheWindowsClub YouTube Channel.

How do I fix my offline connection?

If your network is offline, try performing a power cycle on your router or modem and see if the problem is fixed. Apart from that, update your network driver to its latest version. If nothing helps, you can directly contact your ISP to fix the issue.

Fix: This video is not available on YouTube.

How To Force Websites To Use Https Instead Of Insecure Http.

As the Internet slowly but surely starts transitioning from the old and widely used HTTP format to the new HTTPS secured format, you will start to see more and more browsers block access to HTTP websites purely from a security standpoint. So if you still constantly access websites using the less secure HTTP format, this article will show you how to force them to use HTTPS.

How to Block/Hide Cookie and GDPR Warnings Displayed By Websites.

Online security is one of the most important yet difficult areas of life in an always-connected Internet environment. It seems like every day there is a new and emerging threat or vulnerability discovered that threatens to leave us all wide open to some kind of financial or personal information theft.

Although viruses, malware, stalkerware, ransomware, and phishing scams make up most of these threats, accessing and browsing insecure websites that still use the now outdated HTTP format can also leave a person vulnerable. If you are using a modern and up to date browser like Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, Google Chrome or Opera, your browser will generally warn you if you are entering a website that isn’t secured by HTTPS. If you’d like to learn a little more about the differences between HTTP and HTTPS I suggest checking out the following Wikipedia page which explains everything in detail.

Can You Force HTTP Websites to Use HTTPS? You Sure Can!

Now that you understand the fundamental reasons for the need to switch to HTTPS, you can begin the process of forcing websites to use HTTPS instead of HTTP. To begin you will need to download a small extension called HTTPS Everywhere, which is available for Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Opera.

HTTPS Everywhere is a collaboration project developed between The Electronic Frontier Foundation and The Tor Project, so before you add the extension to your browser, it’s worth checking out both developer websites for a little more information.

Download HTTPS Everywhere For Opera.

Download HTTPS Everywhere For Firefox.

Download HTTPS Everywhere For Chrome.

Related: How to Securely and Anonymously Share Files of Any Size Using the Tor Network.

If you would rather completely block all HTTP websites, you can tick the Block all unencrypted requests box in the extension. This will prevent all HTTP websites from being displayed, instead showing the following message. Keep in mind that the extension for Google Chrome is still in beta phase so it may be a little overprotective or buggy at times.

Related: How to Send Self Destructing Emails From Gmail. (Time Erased Emails)

How To Change The Aspect Ratio Of An Image In Photoshop

Preparing your images for print may require you to learn how to change the aspect ratio. In Photoshop, you can use the crop tool to resize your images to the exact specifications you need. This enables you to easily fit your images into the frame you have chosen, as the crop tool will help you change the aspect ratio in a few simple steps.

To change the aspect ratio of an image in Photoshop, select the Crop Tool (C) and set the Crop Preset to “Ratio.” Next, type in the desired ratio values in the upper setting bar to change the ratio of the crop overlay. Once positioned, press the checkmark to crop and update the aspect ratio.

Rather than struggling with the ruler tool and trying to resize your images using millimeters, inches, or pixels, the aspect ratio allows you to correct the image’s dimensions. This method is also used when you want to remove unwanted elements to focus on the focal point of your image.

So let’s start by learning the ratio feature of the crop tool!

How To Change The Aspect Ratio In Photoshop

In this section, I will explain how you can set a specific aspect ratio for an image of any size. For this tutorial, I will be using the 16:9 aspect ratio. Depending on the current dimensions of your image, you may lose some of the background or foreground. However, you will have a correctly sized image for print or an image focusing on the right objects.

Step 1: Access The Crop Tool

To start, simply select the crop tool. You can find it on your toolbar on the left-hand side of your Photoshop screen. Alternatively, you can simply press C on your keyboard. 

Once the crop tool has been selected, your previous settings used when using this tool will be applied. This will need to be changed to match the aspect ratio we want to use, which in this case is 16:9.

Step 2: Change The Crop Preset To “Ratio”

The next step is to select the drop-down menu directly next to the crop tool icon on the top options bar. Changing the settings to “Ratio” allows you to set your image to any aspect ratio, which is great for printing images for specific frame sizes.

Here you will notice the previous crop settings are still selected. In this case, the “4 x 5 in 300 PPI” option is still selected.

Next, select “Ratio” at the top of the drop-down menu, as this will enable you to choose a ratio as desired. For our example, you will now type in “16” and “9” to the two blocks to the right of the drop-down menu.

Your image will now have the crop block based on your set ratio. You can move this block to make sure you keep the relevant parts of your image and crop the edges outside of the block as usual.  Simply use the navigation arrows on your keyboard to move the block around the image, and hit enter to crop.

Can You Change The Aspect Ratio Without Cropping?

Changing the aspect ratio may crop out parts of the image you wish to keep. This is especially true if you are using this feature to resize an image for print.

Unfortunately, if your image was not originally the aspect ratio that you require, you will likely need to crop certain elements of the image.

If you want to avoid cropping elements out of your image, there are two tricks you can use to manipulate the image. Unfortunately, one method will lead to some distortion, so it may not look aesthetically pleasing if you try to save too much of the image. 

The first method is done by reducing the image size to fit inside the new aspect ratio before slightly stretching the sides of the image to reach the aspect ratio.

To stretch the image, make sure the “Delete Cropped Pixels” box is unticked after choosing your ratio and press enter or the checkmark in the options bar to finish the crop.

Next, select the image option on the menu bar and select “Canvas Size.” To use a shortcut press Control + Alt + C (Windows) or Command + Option + C (Mac).

Increase the canvas size in the width and height boxes, but be sure to keep them in multiples of the aspect ratio you have chosen. The width should be related to the first number of the aspect ratio, and the height is the second number.

Then simply drag the sides of the image to the end of the canvas. It will stretch your image slightly, so be aware of the distortion.

If you prefer not to stretch the image, increase the canvas size in line with your chosen aspect ratio before decreasing the image size to fit your canvas. Then simply create a white background around the image.

How To Save An Aspect Ratio As A Crop Preset 

If you have a specific aspect ratio you want to use for multiple images, you can save your chosen aspect ratio as a preset. This will enable you to easily select this chosen aspect ratio from the drop-down menu. 

Start by following the steps to change the aspect ratio, and once you have entered your chosen aspect ratio into the blocks, select the drop-down menu again and choose the “New Crop Preset” option. 

A box will appear where you can enter a name for your new preset. In this case, I have chosen “My Aspect Ratio.”

Your preset will remain in the drop-down list until you choose to delete it. You can also add as many presets as you need.

Following these steps enables you to easily crop and resize your images to the correct dimensions for any frame size. This means you won’t have to worry about printing photographs that don’t fit your frames anymore. Try out the extra tips to avoid losing too much of your image, but be careful not to distort it too much.

Now, this tutorial covered how to crop the entire canvas, but what if you want to only crop a single layer? Luckily you can learn how here!

Happy Cropping!

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