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Even Google Can Get Hacked

By June 29, 2017May 24th, 2021Cybersecurity

Google has a rock-solid reputation and an almost uncanny ability to ward off hacking efforts, but even they aren’t infallible. Even they can be hacked, as a recent incident involving Google News has demonstrated.

In the early morning hours of June 12, the news service was temporarily overrun, and all the leading news stories were replaced by spam content hawking dating sites, Viagra and an assortment of other drugs. The attack only succeeded for a short time before it was pushed back and relegated to the Health section.

Upon further investigation, Google reported that the hack wasn’t aimed directly at them. Rather, it was a coordinated attack on a number of news sites who publish the content Google displays on Google News, and as a result of those hacks, malicious links were inserted into the content, which was how they showed up on the Google News feed.

A spokesman for Palate Press, one of the hacked sites, had this to say: “We are not sure how the hackers got in, but it took two days to clear out the thousands upon thousands of malicious files. Once that was done we had to ask Google and Bing to recrawl the site to flush out the bad links.”

For their part, Google reiterated that no human editors are involved in the story selection process or in deciding which stories deserve top placement and best visibility. That is determined by the freshness, diversity and originality of the content in the article in question.

No matter who you are, how big your company is or how robust your digital security is, hackers will always find a way. Given that reality, the best you can do is take all reasonable precautions, and have a rapid response plan in place for the day when the inevitable occurs.

Jason Manteiga

Jason J. Manteiga, Vice President of Olmec Systems, has been part of the company for over the past 20 years. He believes that having a great work environment and supportive team, is the ultimate key to success. Since being in the IT realm for over 25 years, Jason, along with Olmec Systems, has been on the Inc. 5000 “List of America’s Fastest Growing Private Companies” and Channel Futures MSP 501 “Top Managed Service Providers in North America,” along with other awards and nominations. Jason earned his Bachelor Degree in Information Systems from the New Jersey Institute of Technology. He also holds certifications in Microsoft MCSE, VMWare VCP, and Cisco CCNA. In his spare time, Jason is a contributor for The Center for Social & Legal Research (Privacy Exchange) and a member of the Morris County Chamber of Commerce. His hobbies include cycling and kayaking. He currently lives in New Jersey with his wife, two daughters and son.