Google has warned several users regarding a malware that could make them take part in state-sponsored attacks.
Eric Grosse, VP of security engineering at Google, explained in a blog post that only a subset of users will receive notifications, and added that the search giant is monitoring usage as it attempts to trap the culprits and machines that are currently at risk of infection.
“We are constantly on the lookout for malicious activity on our systems, in particular attempts by third parties to log into users’ accounts unauthorized. When we have specific intelligence – either directly from users or from our own monitoring efforts – we show clear warning signs and put in place extra roadblocks to thwart these bad actors,” said Grosse. “Today, we’re taking that a step further for a subset of our users, who we believe may be the target of state-sponsored attacks.”
Grosse said that the risk is just the same even though not all of the recipients will receive the infection.
“If you see this warning it does not necessarily mean that your account has been hijacked. It just means that we believe you may be a target, of phishing or malware for example, and that you should take immediate steps to secure your account,” he added. “These warnings are not being shown because Google’s internal systems have been compromised or because of a particular attack.”
Grosse limited the information about the infection since disclosing too many details might only aid the attackers.
“Our detailed analysis – as well as victim reports – strongly suggest the involvement of states or groups that are state-sponsored.”