If you’re one of the billion-plus users of Google Chrome on Windows, then you should note the serious new warning issued this week. This particular warning is a surprise—because it seems to come on Chrome’s behalf from one of its harshest critics. Google Chrome dominates the worldwide browser market, with approaching 65% of the market to Apple Safari’s less than 20% in second place. Every other alternative, including Microsoft Edge, is just an also-ran. Microsoft isn’t used to any kind of also-ran status, and in a world where its Windows operating system has an even more dominant desktop market share, a new report suggests it is doing something about this. If you use Chrome on a Windows device, the report warns that your user experience will be badly hit. The research was sponsored by Mozilla, developer of the Firefox browser which lags a little behind Edge, with a 3.3% versus 5.3% market share. Mozilla commissioned “two independent experts… to investigate Microsoft’s design practices across its core OS (Windows 10 and 11), web browser (Edge), and search engine (Bing).” “We find,” those experts say, “Microsoft repeatedly using harmful design to influence users into using Edge.” Claims include “harmful preselection, visual interference, trick wording, and disguised ads patterns to skew user choice of which browser to install… Obstruction to dissuade the switch [to a different default browser] and a refusal to switch the corresponding default app for various local web-related filetypes… [and ongoing] “harmful patterns to push the user back towards Edge.” Mozilla is no fan of Chrome, to say the least. “Chrome is the only major browser that does not offer meaningful protection against cross-site tracking,” it has said of the long-delayed removal of tracking cookies from Chrome. And its website warns that Chrome’s “privacy record is questionable… Google collects a disturbingly large amount of data from its users—Google runs the world’s largest advertising network, thanks in large part to data they harvest from their users.” But the report that Mozilla has just published is not really about Edge competing for users with Firefox. It is all about Chrome. Because, in reality, most Windows users by the numbers will install Chrome. And so it serves as a warning to those users. With a fresh Windows desktop, users find Edge pre-installed and set as the default. It is also pinned to the taskbar and can’t be uninstalled. If the user decides to install Chrome, the report shows how Microsoft interrupts the installation, claiming the security and privacy benefits of Edge. The researchers warn that “users may be alarmed when they see the Edge promotional message appear within the Chrome download page, reasoning that since the banner is unusual it must be very important.” For more visit OUR FORUM.