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An internal change in Microsoft’s browser could render antiviruses useless

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Microsoft Implements Google Manifest Requirements in Chromium-Based Edge

Unlike other browser makers who chose to ignore the third version of Google’s Manifest (Manifest V3), Microsoft has now decided to implement appropriate changes to the Chromium-based Edge browser extension system.

First released in October 2018, Google Manifest V3 offers a set of changes for the Chromium engine and WebExtensions API that change the way extensions work with Chrome, Brave, Opera, Vivaldi, Edge, and other Chromium-based browsers.

Google noted during the announcement that the changes are aimed at improving the security and performance of extensions, as well as increasing user control over extensions. However, Manifest V3 caused fierce controversy as it restricted ad blockers, antivirus software, parental controls, and other privacy-focused extensions.

Everyone was dissatisfied – from extension developers and browsers to end users. The browser makers Opera, Brave, and Vivaldi have openly announced that they are going to ignore Manifest V3 updates so that ad blockers can continue to be used.

After this rebuff, Google rolled back some of the changes it wanted to implement as part of the manifesto. However, changes to Manifest V3 have already started rolling out to Chrome, despite concerns from ad blocker developers. The preview / alpha implementation of Manifest V3 in Chrome began back in October last year, with a stable release scheduled for late 2020.

The same changes have now been implemented in the new stable and test versions of Microsoft Edge based on the Chromium engine. According to the development team, the effectiveness of ad blockers should not be affected.

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