Saturday, September 11, 2010

Important Reminder for AdSense & AdWords Users!

A while ago I wrote an article about protecting yourself and your AdSense account from phishing attemps. Well today, I want to remind AdSense publishers NOT to click on any email link unless they are absolutely certain the email has come from AdSense or Google, and never REPLY to any of these type of messages with personal information.

The other day I received an email which wound up in my spam box; the email indicated it was from "Google Team" - this was the first red flag for me. Emails to me from Google or Adsense have not ever come from "Google Team".

When looking at the "Re" line of the mail, the word "your" was misspelled "yuor google Account". This was the second red  flag. The third red flag was all the spelling errors in the body of the email, and then there was the fact that this email expected me to reply with:

My User Name
My Login Password
My Current Country

No contact I have received from Google, Gmail or AdSense has ever asked me my current country - they are in fact already aware of this information. Had I requested an address or change of country from them directly, I would expect that question, but not in an unsolicited email.

This email also indicates that I need to "update to a fully supported browser". My browser(s) are supported, and are already updated, and updating my browser would have nothing to do with my account unless I were having problems accessing it...which I don't.  I also don't use the Chrome browser, and it is not listed under my services and products in my Google account.

Finally, when checking the email headers, the sender address and the email reply address are not at all related to AdSense, or Google.

Anybody who responded to an email such as this one would soon find all of their accounts associated with their Google account compromised - this includes Gmail, AdSense, AdWords, Blogger and any other Google product and service you use under that particular Google Account.

Emails such as this are the reason people sometimes find themselves unable to access their AdSense, AdWords or Blogger accounts.

Be very careful before you give out any information such as your User Name, Login Password and other personal details. Never, ever give this in an email you are not sure about. If you receive an email and you don't know or aren't sure if it came from Google or AdSense, then use the help forums and ask someone to confirm it's validity.

You'll note...the date on that email was Saturday, August 10th. Here it  is Thursday Sept. 2nd...and my accounts are perfectly fine without having completed this "validation" and my gmail account hasn't been deleted, either.



Well, it appears that the above noted "phishing expidition" just wasn't enough for some folks. I guess they weren't all that happy with my decision to ignore them.

This morning (Saturday, Sept. 11 - an interesting date choice for this) I received yet another of these mails. The text of the mail is below:

date    Sat, Sep 11, 2010 at 5:27 AM
subject    Final Warning

Our technology & science team has recently launched Google web software to protect and secure all Gmail Accounts. This system also enhanced efficient networking and fully supported browser. You need to upgrade to a fully supported browser by filling out the details below for validation purpose and to confirm your details on the new webmaster Central system.

Account Name:                        



Note: Your Account will be deleted permanently if you failed to provide the details below within 72hours. Gmail will not be heard responsible for your negligence.
The Google web Service. 

Just to be clear - Google did NOT send this if you received one. GMail did NOT send this. Nobody associated with Google sent this - IGNORE it. Mark it as spam and DO NOT give these people ANY of your information.

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