Google told its fans last week that they expected an increase in the number of reported cyberattacks in the coming months. Adrian Taylor, a member of Chrome’s security team, explained the increase in a blog post on March 10, reports The Sun.

“If you’re a regular reader of our Chrome releases blog, you may have noticed that phrases such as ‘exploit for CVE-1234-567 exists in the wild’ are popping up more often recently,” wrote Taylor adding that the increase in reports of cyberattacks is likely the result of two factors.

“While the increase may initially seem concerning, it is important to understand the reason for this trend. If it’s because there are a lot more exploits in the wild, that could indicate a worrying trend. On the other hand, if we just gain visibility into exploitation by attackers, that’s actually a good thing! This is good because it means we can respond by delivering bug fixes faster to our users, and we can learn more about how real attackers work. So what is it? It’s probably a bit of both.”

The number of exploits in the wild (software vulnerabilities that are actively used by cyber crooks to break into Chrome and attack users), also known as “zero days”, discovered by researchers more than tripled between 2019 and 2021, according to data from Google’s Project Zero cybersecurity lab.

Chrome’s dramatic rise in popularity in recent years may be partly to blame, Taylor said, as it makes the browser a more attractive prospect for cyberattacks due to its large base of potential victims. The increased complexity of browsers such as Chrome, as PCs and smartphones become smarter, is also responsible for this increase, points out The Sun.

How to protect your PC?

Users can protect their PCs by ensuring that they keep their browsers up to date with the latest software versions. “Above all, if Chrome reminds you to update, do it!” To update Chrome, open the browser and click on the icon More (three vertical dots) in the upper right. Click on Update Google Chrome. If this option is not available, it means that you are already using the latest version. Once the update is complete, click Revive.