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The Latest Google Email Scam and How You Can Protect Yourself

posted on May 4, 2017

Chances are you’ve heard about the recent email scam, where hackers attempted to break into company servers and proceed to send fake emails to employees. First, the scammers would send a fake email from a known contact to the recipient by sharing a Google Doc. When the recipient clicked on the Google Doc, they would be brought to a screen that looked eerily similar to Google, where they were required to login using their Google information. If the recipient was unfortunate enough to enter their information it would go directly to the hacker, potentially giving them a significant amount of private data. If you ever encounter a situation like this, please do not click on the email. If you did click on the link, you can remove it by following these steps:

  • Permanently delete the email.
  • Log into look for “Google Docs” and stop permissions. “Google Docs” should not be in that list.
  • If “Google Docs” has permissions to your account, then select Remove and reset your Gmail password as soon as possible. This will take away the permissions that the link setup.
  • If any other accounts had the same password, it is a good idea to change those passwords as well.”


This is an example of what the email would have looked like.

For situations that come up in the future, the Better Business Bureau has provided this list of ways to handle these kinds of instances:

  • Look for a phishing alert. Gmail automatically displays warnings on messages they suspect are phishing attacks. Always look for these warnings at the top of your email.
  • Know when you are logged in. If you are already logged into Gmail to check your email, you won’t need to log-in again to view a Google Drive document.
  • Report it: Help Google identify suspicious emails by reporting them. On an email message, click the down arrow next to “reply” and select “report phishing.”

  • Turn on two-step verification. If you fear your account has been compromised or you are worried about security, you can sign up for additional security for your Google account. Logging in will then require both a username/password and entering a code sent to your cell phone.
  • If your account may have been compromised, be sure to change your password. Pick one that will be very difficult to guess and contains upper case letters, numbers and symbols.

If you’re interested in learning more about how you can protect yourself and your business, visit our website and talk to one of our technology professionals.

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