#macsecurity | #operatingsystem | Google Chrome bug leads to crashes on Macs with Apple CPUs

Google is currently working on fixing a known issue causing a Google Chrome web browser version launched earlier today for Apple processors to suddenly crash.

“Earlier today we updated our Chrome download page to include a new version of Chrome optimized for new macOS devices featuring an Apple processor,” Chrome Support Manager Craig Tumblison said.

“We’ve discovered that the version of Chrome made available for download today may crash unexpectedly.”

This known issue should only impact Google Chrome users who have downloaded and installed the web browser today on macOS devices with an Apple M1 processor.

Google has already identified a fix for this issue and is currently working on releasing a fixed Google Chrome version that will work without crashing out of the blue.

Workarounds available

Until Google will provide a patched Chrome version, Tumblison provides workarounds that should allow affected users to restore their browser to a working state.

One of the temporary workarounds would be to provide Google Chrome with access to the Mac’s Bluetooth radio using this procedure:

  1. Open System Preferences.
  2. Navigate to Security & Privacy.
  3. At the top, select Privacy.
  4. From the left, select Bluetooth.
  5. Below your approved applications, select add application (+).
  6. Select Google Chrome.
  7. Restart Chrome.

The second temporary workaround requires you to install the Intel processor Chrome version by going through the following steps:

  1. Uninstall Chrome.
  2. Visit the Chrome download page.
  3. If prompted, select “Mac with Intel chip” when downloading Chrome.

Chrome 87 released today

Google began rolling out Chrome 87 earlier today, the first version specifically optimized to run on macOS devices with Apple M1 chips.

Chrome 87 is “up to 25% faster to start up and 7% faster to load pages, all while using less memory” according to Google.

The performance was increased via JavaScript Timer throttling (only allowing JavaScript timers to wake up and perform a function once every minute) and through Occlusion Tracking to determine what tabs are used so that resources are only allocated to actively used tabs.

Google has also disabled FTP support by default in this version which means that visiting an ftp:// site will do nothing in the web browser.

This version also addresses the Slipstream attack discovered by security researcher Samy Kamkar, a new attack that enables threat actors to bypass NAT and access any TCP/UDP port on a victim’s computer.

In all, Chrome 87 fixes 33 security vulnerabilities, with Google restricting bug details until the vast majority of users are updated.

Update: Added a second workaround.

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