An error in Microsoft Edge’s SmartScreen filter incorrectly flagged ProtonMail and ProdonDrive websites as potentially dangerous.
It is with a very alarming message that Internet users have been greeted by connecting to ProtonMail or ProtonDrive, if they access the web with Edge, Microsoft’s browser. While going to the site of either service, they faced a warning message with a red background: if they stay on this site, they run a computer security risk.
“ This site has been flagged as insecure ,” headlines Microsoft‘s warning. The company, which publishes Edge, ” recommends leaving this site ” because ” it has been reported to contain phishing threats that may steal your personal or financial information “. A Frandroid editorial staff confirmed that he also received this message on August 3.
We could not reproduce the alert screen on our Edge browser, when we wanted to connect to the two sites in question mail.proton.me and drive.proton.me. But other Internet users have had this warning, like the WorkingHardInIT Twitter account , on August 2. Other Internet users in response have also confirmed having seen this message.
ProtonMail is an email service similar to Gmail, except that the Swiss-based webmail focuses its communication and efforts on protecting the privacy and confidentiality of its users — it does not display advertisements , for example. As for ProtonDrive, it is a cloud storage service, identical to so many others.
A false positive, warns ProtonMail
The Proton Twitter account dedicated to support reacted on August 1 when it heard of the first reports from Internet users. It appears that this detection is a false positive from Microsoft Edge, which clearly encounters a filtering problem with its SmartScreen service. This old tool is supposed to protect the Internet user against malicious sites and downloads.
“ There is a bug in Microsoft Edge SmartScreen that incorrectly flags ProtonMail and ProtonDrive as unsafe. Please report that this is not phishing and/or ignore the error. Microsoft has been contacted to fix this bug ,” the support account writes. And to slip in passing a tackle to the editor: “ You can also use another / better browser. »
It has happened in the past that SmartScreen identifies a site or software as threatening, by mistake. Fortunately, this is not so frequent, otherwise the tool would quickly lose its interest – Internet users would end up deactivating it out of annoyance, if the sites or software they use are often reported as dangerous. In 2015, it was Tor Messenger that was mistakenly flashed .