Chrome 76 makes it easier to get around paywalls

Punch through wall

Google is busy working away on Chrome 76, and the beta version of the browser includes a change that will please anyone looking to bypass paywalls and view articles for free.

Many people switch to Incognito Mode, aware that this makes it possible to access paywalled articles on sites such as the New York Times. Many sites offer a number of free articles to non-paying visitors, and using this mode makes it impossible to determine whether you have reached your free article limit or not. As such, some sites blocked access to anyone using Incognito Mode -- but Chrome 76 has a trick up its sleeve.


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In the latest version of Google's web browser, websites are no longer able to determine whether you are using Incognito Mode or browsing normally. Any "detect private mode" scripts used by sites to poke the FileSystem API have been rendered useless by Chrome 76, but this could easily turn into a game of cat and mouse as publishers seek out new ways to determine whether Incognito Mode is being used.

While this is certainly one of the more exciting features of Chrome 76, it is certainly not all this release has to offer. Other highlights include the blocking of Flash by default (although this can be overridden if you really want), better support for websites with dark modes, and improvements to the installation of PWAs (progressive web apps).

Full details of what to expect from Chrome 76 can be found in this blog post from Google.

Image credit: Alexandr Demeshkof / Shutterstock

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