Posts Tagged ‘gmail’
Google has launched a new feature in Gmail that will alert users when the system detects suspicious activity that might indicate the account has been compromised.
Gmail already displays information at the bottom of the in-box showing the time of the last activity on the account and whether it’s still open in another location. But people often don’t think to check that information, Will Cathcart, a Gmail product manager, said in an interview.
So Google is taking the extra step of displaying a warning to users in the form of a big banner that says “warning your acct was accessed from…” and which specifies a geographic region where the account was accessed when unusual activity was detected.
“For example, if you always log in from the same country and all of a sudden there is a log in from halfway around the world” that is suspicious, Cathcart said. Or, if the system detects that one particular IP address is accessing numerous accounts and changing passwords for them, that would trigger warnings for affected accounts, he said.
After receiving the warning banner, users can click a “details” link to get more information, such as where the last access points were. Users can change their password from that window.
The Gmail blog has a bunch more info on the topic. Seems like a useful pointer.
Daylife/AP Photo used by permission
Google has declined comment on a Washington Post report that it has asked the National Security Agency to help track down the cyberattackers who recently breached its databases.
Reporter Ellen Nakashima’s front page story on Thursday rekindled concerns about corporations collaborating with government sleuth agencies. You might recall the alarm raised by privacy and civil liberties advocates in 2006 after a USA TODAY investigation revealed how the NSA secretly analyzed phone records of tens of millions of Americans.
At the time, public backlash was directed mainly at telecom giants AT&T, Verizon and BellSouth for so readily giving up their customers’ private phone records to a government agency.
In a similar vein, Google, the world’s dominant search service, amasses data on the surfing habits of most Internet users, and stores vast amounts of sensitive data belonging to users of its popular Gmail and Google Apps online services, says Amrit Williams, CTO of security firm Big Fix. Because the NSA is an “opaque intelligence organization . . .the potential for abuse of private information at the intelligence or government level is very high,” he says…
That’s possible – perhaps, likely; but, it’s an unsound logical statement. It’s opinion.