Final week I obtained an unsolicited e mail from somebody known as Emma.
She works for a “language studying app”, and mentioned that they had been massive followers of the “Smashing Security” podcast (yeah, proper…) and that they’d like to have a member of their group come on the present.
I ponder if they’ve really ever listened to the podcast I co-host, as they didn’t provide to speak about something to do with cybersecurity.
As a substitute, right here’s what they pitched (I’ve redacted the title of their product, as they haven’t paid me to promote for them):
We will cowl matters equivalent to GPT-3 in Language Training, EdTech, Studying Science and Linguistics.
As a result of your podcast sits within the tech area, we predict your viewers could be most to listen to about [REDACTED],our AI language chatbot powered by GPT-3 know-how.
Hmm, that will or might not be fascinating – however it feels prefer it’s a way faraway from what “Smashing Safety” listeners would tune in to listen to.
What disgruntles me is that not solely does this unsolicited e mail land in my e mail inbox, but when I enter Google Drive I discover an undesirable three-page pitch doc from them has additionally been shared with me.
Drive reveals any shared recordsdata in your shared paperwork folder, notifies you of the share in your telephone, highlights the “new current file” on the high of the Drive interface, lists the file in searches, and sends you an e mail about it, all with none indication that you understand the file sharer in any respect.
Nicely, there’s excellent news when you’re affected by shared Google Drive recordsdata from strangers. Google Drive is getting a spam folder.
Google says that when customers transfer an unsolicited file into the spam folder, they gained’t obtain any additional notifications relating to the file, and it gained’t present up anyplace aside from the spam folder. Google may also – simply as with e mail spam – try to find out if a file is undesirable, and robotically transfer it to the spam folder.
After a file has sat in Google Drive’s spam folder for over 30 days, it will likely be completely deleted.
Certain, in my explicit instance the file was shared as a part of an clumsy try to advertise a ill-fitting firm on a well-liked podcast. However there have been studies previously of abusive ex-partners exploiting Google Drives.
4 weeks in the past I found I’m nonetheless shared on a Google Drive folder of images my abusive ex controls and is actively placing images into.
On the similar time I realized there’s **no option to take away your individual entry from a folder you will have been given view-only entry to**.
— Jessica Lord (@jllord) December 27, 2018
Different customers have reported having recordsdata shared with them which comprise adverts, pornographic content material, courting scams, and malware.
The issue of Google Drive shared file spam might not be as massive as that of e mail spam or instant-messaging spam, however it’s good to see Google get up to the issue and develop options to assist customers not be overwhelmed by undesirable communications.