Google Docs Not Compromised Despite Suspicious Search Results

The Google Documents service wasn't compromised despite the fact that Russian Internet search engine Yandex recently started yielding links to seemingly private files hosted on the popular service, the Alphabet-owned company said. This Wednesday evening, social media users in the transcontinental country started posting about hundreds of such documents becoming easily discoverable through Yandex, having shared links to press briefing notes, business strategies, and even an internal memo from one Russian bank, none of which were likely ever supposed to be public.

In spite of the development, Google Documents suffered no data breach of any kind, the tech giant said, adding that the only documents hosted by its service that can be discovered via Internet search engines are those which were deliberately set as public, or those whose links were shared in public forums, thus being exposed to the company's web crawlers which index the World Wide Web 24-7. A Yandex representative said that none of the Google Docs results reported so far direct users to password-protected or otherwise private files, with that statement being in line with Google's official stance on the matter. It's presently unclear whether either company is investigating the reports any further. One Yandex official also said many suspicious results leading to various Google Docs files can also be discovered through other search engines but hasn't elaborated on that claim.

Accidental sharing and unprotected servers are some of the most common causes of major data breaches, with reports about issues stemming from such mistakes being both frequent and originating from all parts of the world. None of the assumed orders of the suspiciously surfaced files have yet commented on the development in any capacity, whereas the spotted files themselves don't appear highly sensitive in nature even as they presumably weren't meant for publication. Another Google popular service recently found itself in the public spotlight over privacy concerns after a report that hundreds of independent developers are still allowed to read some people's Gmail inboxes.

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Dominik Bosnjak

Head Editor
Dominik started at AndroidHeadlines in 2016 and is the Head Editor of the site today. He’s approaching his first full decade in the media industry, with his background being primarily in technology, gaming, and entertainment. These days, his focus is more on the political side of the tech game, as well as data privacy issues, with him looking at both of those through the prism of Android. Contact him at [email protected]
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