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Google acknowledges new Gmail spam that makes emails appear to be sent by you

Google's Gmail users are reporting a new spam that forges email headers.

  • Published: April 23, 2018 9:00 AM IST

Gmail, the email service from Google, has a proven track record of preventing spam from reaching your inbox. Despite that abilities and algorithms powering that spam filter, there are times when spam mails do enter your inbox. One such variant has recently been found to smartly circumvent Google’s spam detection, and hit your inbox.

The new variant makes it appear as if you are sending the spam email to yourself. In the past 24 hours, there have been multiple reports about a spam activity where the sender’s email address is same as that of recipient. The official thread of the Gmail help forum has several dozen reports of such an issue. The emails arriving in inboxes essentially appear as if they are being sent by you. The sender in the inbox is marked as “Me”, and includes profile icon of the Gmail users on mobile.

While the spam email shows the sender name as that of yours in the main view, the message notes a different sender when you open it with your email address attached on the “From” line. In the forum, Gmail users note that the subject line and contents of the email are different. This spam email seems to be sending the message to the same unknown set of recipients.

These messages also seem to be appearing in the sent folder of Gmail users, which is a cause of concern. The spammers are trying to project that user account has been compromised, and might trick users to click on the links within the email. The forum users also note that these fraudulent emails have not stopped even after resetting their passwords. Users also report there are no suspicious login activity being recorded in their accounts.

In a statement to 9to5Google, the search giant has acknowledged this spam campaign which involves use of “forged email headers that made it appear as if users were receiving emails from themselves, which also led to those messages erroneously appearing in the Sent folder”. Google said, “We have identified and are reclassifying all offending emails as spam, and have no reason to believe any accounts were compromised as part of this incident.”

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Google is encouraging Gmail users to report if they notice any suspicious using forged email headers to send spam to your inbox. It says there is no reason to believe that user accounts were compromised to effectively transmit these spam messages.

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  • Published Date: April 23, 2018 9:00 AM IST