Google warns users of state-sponsored attacks

Google announced Tuesday on its Online Security Blog that it will now display a warning message to users that Google believes may be the target of "state-sponsored attacks."

Image Credit: Google Online Security Blog

The warning message, as seen in the above example image, will only appear to a subset of users if the company believes the account is being compromised by a state or state-sponsored group. The message will encourage the users to take immediate steps to add security to the account.

The blog post, written by Eric Grosse, VP of Security Engineering, did not go into details about how Google determines that a user account is under attack. Grosse mentions that the company might receive "specific intelligence" either directly from users or from Google's monitoring efforts, after which the account will display the clear warning signs and add extra roadblocks in an attempt to thwart the attackers.

The post also did not go into detail about how Google knows that the particular types of activity in these cases are state-sponsored, because the details of Google's information could assist the attackers in future attempts. Google claims its detailed analysis and victim reports "strongly suggest the involvement of states or groups that are state-sponsored."

Though Google did not name any particular states or groups, this additional security measure follows several high-profile attacks with evidence that linked back to governments in China and Iran.

Source: Google Online Security Blog

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