Google has pulled down an extension for its Chrome browser, which enabled people with racist attitude to track and classify Jewish people.
Following an investigation from New York-based publication Mic, which broke the news, Google took the step to shut down the extension called Coincidence Detector, as it breached the company's Chrome apps' terms of service pertaining to promotion of hate and inciting violence.
"A Google Chrome plugin with the seemingly innocent name of 'Coincidence Detector' has one sole purpose: compiling and exposing the identities of Jews and others who are perceived as 'anti-white,'" noted Mic.
The extension was apparently being deployed by anti-Semites and neo-Nazis to harass and abuse Jewish people.
The Coincidence Detector basically works as a type of crowdsourced database where users suggest or recommend new additions or rectify existing ones as well as add names suggested by others. To add the new names to the database, users can post them on the support tab of the app.
The Coincidence Detector essentially scanned website texts for finding matches on the often-updated user-generated list of Jewish names. Upon finding a match, the plug-in enclosed the name in three sets of parenthesis. According to Mic, this is the format used for identification, and it originated on Right Stuff, a right-wing blog.
Interestingly, the description deployed by the Coincidence Detector was ambiguous about its motive and did not mention Jews. The description of the plug-in was merely stated as "can help you detect total coincidences about who has been involved in certain political movements and media empires."
The Google Chrome plug-in apparently had 2,473 users and was rated 5 out of 5 stars according to Mic. When the extension was removed, it had already been downloaded over 2,700 times. The database was also a sizable 8,700 people.
The plug-in's installation page's screenshot reveals that the Coincidence Detector was last updated on Jan. 19 this year. The publisher of the app is "altrightmedia."
While Google removed the Chrome browser extension, as it violated the terms of service, the company is yet to give an official statement.