Google Chrome blocking access to major torrent sites
If you’re a Chrome user, you might find yourself out of luck the next time you try to torrent Game of Thrones. Google’s web browser appears to have begun to block access to a list of high-profile torrent sites.
File-sharing news site TorrentFreak reported that Chrome users are noticing a sinister red page when trying to access their favourite torrent sites, warning users that “the site ahead contains harmful programs”.
This message appeared on a range of sites including KickassTorrents and Torrentz.
It’s not clear why the blocks are suddenly appearing, but the safety measures appear to be part of Google’s wider Safe Browsing security plan. One theory is that the block has been triggered by malicious ads, which would trigger the Safe Browsing features in Chrome. TorrentFreak reported that torrent site ExtraTorrent successfully removed the block after pointing to the fact that it wasn’t hosting any malware.
It’s worth noting that, when faced with the Google Chrome warning message, it’s possible to click through the Details link and still go on to the site. There’s also the option to disable Chrome’s malware protection completely – although we wouldn’t recommend this.
The majority of torrent sites, including Kat.cr, are already blocked in the UK by internet service providers such as Virgin Media, EE, Sky and BT. To get around this, users have had to use either a proxy site or a virtual private network (VPN) that changes the computer’s IP address to make it seem as if it’s outside the UK.
At the time of writing, KickAssTorrents’ proxy site, kickass.proxyindex.net, seemed to be working fine.