Dangerously convincing Google Docs phishing scam hits the internet

(WSVN) - If you get a request to access a Google Doc in your email, don’t open it! It could be the latest scam targeting your personal information, and it’s more sophisticated than most.

Popular Mechanics reports that the email will appear as though it comes from one of your contacts. When you click yes, Google Docs asks for permission to access your account. It looks identical to the real thing, but if you grant permission, it gives scammers the ability to manage your email account and see your contact list.

Once a user clicks that button, their email will send out messages to all of their contacts with a link just like the one they clicked, spreading the phishing scam further.

While it operates like many other scams out there, this latest attempt is fooling even tech-savvy users. Most phishing scams are fairly easy to spot, with typos or third-party domain names. However, this scam uses a legitimate third-party Google application, that somehow managed to secure the name “Google Docs.”

Using Google’s actual framework, it does not set off red flags since it has none of the hallmarks of usual scams.

The sophisticated nature of the scam prompted Google itself to respond via its twitter account for their Docs platform, saying, “We are investigating a phishing email that appears as Google Docs. We encourage you to not click through & report as phishing within Gmail.”

Indeed, tech experts say the only giveaway to this scam was the fact that so many people received a flood of such emails in such a short time frame.

Those who use Google Docs are urged to exercise caution and confirm with their contacts before opening any emails.

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