How the American Underground Serves a Growing Community of Tech Startups

In this installment of our small business series, Tim Scales, Executive Director at the American Underground in Durham, North Carolina, shares how the organization is meeting the growing needs of their clients through cutting-edge technology and a whole lot of coffee.

It’s really hard to grasp the sheer depth of who we are and what we do until you’re within the walls of the American Underground. Sure, we can tell you we’re a Google for Startups Tech Hub, but it’s only really once you step inside our building that things become clear.


When you visit our space, you’ll begin to understand the palpably energetic community within our walls. Most of our members consider themselves high growth technology startups, over half of which are POC and women-led.

Our clients also represent 39 different industries. Healthtech and medical device companies, B2B SaaS companies, nonprofits, VC firms, marketing agencies — there’s no lack of entrepreneurial spirit at the American Underground. And it’s our job to make sure that we’re providing these incredible businesses with the most effective services possible.

Especially because we’re a tech hub, it’s critical that we have best in class technology in order to attract and retain tech companies that work from American Underground. That’s why we have Google Fiber.

Even when we’re first touring with prospective clients and showing them our space, the fact that we have high-speed, fiber optic internet is one of the first things we bring up — and it’s of mass appeal. I can assure you that before we had Google Fiber, we were not mentioning our internet speeds as a selling point for being a part of our community. Now, it’s a bolstering talking point.

In order for our members to effectively run their businesses and work seamlessly with their teams to showcase the best of what they have to offer to customers and investors, they need high-quality, reliable internet running 24/7. 

We often say that the American Underground is powered by strong coffee and stronger internet. It’s no understatement. The strength, availability and uptime of our internet is possibly the highest priority to our members. (And on our side, we’ve actually saved 90% on internet costs for faster internet by making the switch to Google Fiber. Yes, 90%. I couldn’t believe it either.)

Without reliable internet, the American Underground isn’t a functioning business — and our clients’ wouldn’t be either. We’re happy that our internet connection is now one of our strengths.

Posted by Tim Scales, Executive Director, American Underground.

Enhanced Protection – The strongest level of Safe Browsing protection Google Chrome has to offer

As a follow-up to a previous blog post about How Hash-Based Safe Browsing Works in Google Chrome, we wanted to provide more details about Safe Browsing’s Enhanced Protection mode in Chrome. Specifically, how it came about, the protections that are offered and what it means for your data.

Security and privacy have always been top of mind for Chrome. Our goal is to make security effortless for you while browsing the web, so that you can go about your day without having to worry about the links that you click on or the files that you download. This is why Safe Browsing’s phishing and malware protections have been a core part of Chrome since 2007. You may have seen these in action if you have ever come across one of our red warning pages.

We show these warnings whenever we believe a site that you are trying to visit or file that you are trying to download might put you at risk for an attack. To give you a better understanding of how the Enhanced Protection mode in Safe Browsing provides the strongest level of defense it’s useful to know what is offered in Standard Protection.

Standard Protection

Enabled by default in Chrome, Standard Protection was designed to be privacy preserving at its core by using hash-based checks. This has been effective at protecting users by warning millions of users about dangerous websites. However, hash-based checks are inherently limited as they rely on lookups to a list of known bad sites. We see malicious actors moving fast and constantly evolving their tactics to avoid detection using sophisticated techniques. To counter this, we created a stronger and more customized level of protection that we could offer to users. To this end, we launched Enhanced Protection in 2020, which builds upon the Standard Protection mode in Safe Browsing to keep you safer.

Enhanced Protection

This is the fastest and strongest level of protection against dangerous sites and downloads that Safe Browsing offers in Chrome. It enables more advanced detection techniques that adapt quickly as malicious activity evolves. As a result, Enhanced Protection users are phished 20-35% less than users on Standard Protection. A few of these features include:

  • Real time URL checks: By checking with Google Safe Browsing’s servers in real time before navigating to an uncommon site you’re visiting, Chrome provides the best protection against dangerous sites and uses advanced machine learning models to continuously stay up to date.
  • File checks before downloading: In addition to Chrome’s standard checks of downloaded files, Enhanced Protection users can choose to upload suspicious files to be scanned by Google Safe Browsing’s full suite of malware detection technology before opening the file. This helps catch brand new malware that Safe Browsing has not scanned before or dangerous files hosted on a brand new site.
  • More advanced vision-based phishing detection: To better detect phishing and dangerous sites for Enhanced Protection users, Chrome performs basic client-side checks on the web page to determine if it is suspicious. For pages deemed suspicious, Chrome sends a small set of visual features derived from the page to Google’s Safe Browsing servers for additional phishing classification using computer vision. This helps Chrome more accurately recognize dangerous sites, and can warn other users before they visit the site.

    User data privacy and security

    By opting into Enhanced Protection, you are sharing additional data with Safe Browsing systems that allow us to offer better and faster security both for you, and for all users online. Ensuring user privacy is of utmost importance for us and we go through great lengths to anonymize as much of the data as possible. This data is only used for security purposes and only retained for a short period of time. As threats evolve we will continuously add and improve our existing protections for Enhanced Protection users. These features go through extensive privacy reviews to ensure that your privacy continues to be prioritized while still providing you the highest level of security possible.

    How to enable

    Safe Browsing’s Enhanced Protection is currently available for all desktop platforms, Android devices and now iOS mobile devices. It can be enabled by navigating to the Privacy and Security option located in Chrome settings.

    For enterprise admins, you have the option of enabling Enhanced Safe Browsing on your managed devices using the SafeBrowsingProtectionLevel policy and in the Admin Console.

    For more details and updates about Safe Browsing and its Enhanced Protection mode, please visit our Google Safe Browsing website and follow the Google Security Blog for updates on new features.

Dev Library Letters: 15th Issue

Posted by Garima Mehra, Program Manager

Our monthly newsletter curates some of the best projects developed with Google tech that have been submitted to the Google Dev Library platform. We hope this brings you the inspiration you need for your next project!

Content of the month

Check out our shortlisted Content from Google Cloud, Angular, Android, & Flutter

Google Cloud

Solve the common question, “who parked their car in my spot?” with this clever tutorial.

Designing a data schema 

by Mustapha Adekunle

Better understand what aspects come into consideration when designing a data schema.

Learn how to set up aggregated logging in an organization that has VPC Service Controls and find a Terraform module that lets you automate the setup for your own Google Cloud infrastructure.

Explore how to generate accurate business forecasts at a large scale using state of the art ML capabilities on the Google Cloud Platform.


Understand how to implement the Compound Component Pattern in Angular using Dependency Injection and Content Projection to create an excellent API for your components.


Design patterns and architecture: The Android Developer roadmap — Part 4 

by Jaewoong Eum

Check out the 2022 Android Developer Roadmap- a multi-part series covering important Android fundamentals like Languages, App Manifest, App Components, Android Jetpack, and more.

Geofencing:boost your digital campaign 

by Veronica Putri Anggraini

Read this fun application of geofencing to manage the dilemma of where to eat lunch based on which restaurant has the best deal.


Data structures with Dart: Set 

by Daria Orlova

Get over your fear of data structures and algorithms with this helpful and snappy how-to focused on the Set.

Want to read more?
Check out the latest projects and community-authored content by visiting Google Dev Library.
Submit your projects to showcase your work and inspire developers!

Dev Channel Update for Desktop

The dev channel has been updated to 110.0.5449.3 for Windows .

A partial list of changes is available in the log. Interested in switching release channels? Find out how. If you find a new issue, please let us know by filing a bug. The community help forum is also a great place to reach out for help or learn about common issues.

Daniel Yip
Google Chrome

Dev Channel Update for ChromeOS / ChromeOS Flex

The Dev channel is being updated to OS version: 15263.0.0, Browser version: 110.0.5447.0 for most ChromeOS devices.

If you find new issues, please let us know one of the following ways:

  1. File a bug
  2. Visit our ChromeOS communities
    1. General: Chromebook Help Community
    2. Beta Specific: ChromeOS Beta Help Community
  3. Report an issue or send feedback on Chrome
  4. Interested in switching channels? Find out how.

Cole Brown,

Google ChromeOS

Google Workspace Updates Weekly Recap – December 2, 2022

New updates 

There are no new updates to share this week. Please see below for a recap of published announcements. 

Previous announcements

The announcements below were published on the Workspace Updates blog earlier this week. Please refer to the original blog posts for complete details.

Improved meeting quality when joining on virtual machines 
If you use a Virtual Desktop Interface (VDI) such as Citrix or VMWare to join Google Meet calls, you’ll notice an increase in video and audio quality. Meet will now detect whether you’re joining from a VDI and automatically adjust for the best performance. | Learn more

Use the Cloud Search Query API to set Suggest Filters to enhance Cloud Search results 
It’s now easier to configure and use Cloud Search search filters and facets with multiple enhancements to our existing functionalities. With this launch, you can use the Cloud Search Query API to configure new additional capabilities. | Available to Google Cloud Search Customers only. | Learn more.

For a recap of announcements in the past six months, check out What’s new in Google Workspace (recent releases).

Chrome for Android Update

Hi, everyone! We've just released Chrome 108 (108.0.5359.79) for Android: it'll become available on Google Play over the next few days.

This release includes stability and performance improvements. You can see a full list of the changes in the Git log. If you find a new issue, please let us know by filing a bug.

Android releases contain the same security fixes as their corresponding Desktop release (Windows: 108.0.5359.94/.95, Mac & Linux: 108.0.5359.94), unless otherwise noted.

Krishna Govind
Google Chrome