Have you ever opened a website only to be asked to turn on notifications right away? Or worse yet, did you find yourself accepting those prompts, only to have that website proceed to bombard you with spam notifications? Microsoft hopes to end that in its Edge browser
Microsoft Edge has been in the news lately for its artificial intelligence additions, but there have been a few other features in the works. A common spam distribution method in recent years is through website notifications, and those websites spam you via browser notifications. You’re safe as long as you block notifications from that website, but if you make the mistake of hitting “OK,” all hell breaks loose. This is what Microsoft Edge aims to fix here.
Now, Microsoft Edge is blocking these requests on “unknown” sites. The notice will still be there, but it will be displayed silently in the search bar with a bell icon. The browser will also explain that the website was considered “unknown” and therefore the notifications were blocked just in case. If you still want to enable notifications for that website despite the potential risks, you can go to the bell icon and click “Allow”.
This isn’t the only measure Microsoft is working on. The company’s Digital Crimes Unit has also worked to analyze these notifications and identify their providers at the hands of law enforcement. Microsoft says that it has removed notification privileges from many of the websites that send these notifications. While it’s nearly impossible to go through them all, this means that most (larger) sites might not send you scam notifications. And for those that still do, the feature we mentioned above should still help keep them at bay.
Finally, if you turn on notifications, there’s also an easy way to stop the barrage if you regret the mistake. Just right-click on one of the scam notifications and click “turn off all notifications”. This gives you an easy way to reverse the error and restore peace to your computer.
These changes are rolling out now, so be sure to keep your browser up to date.