Spam campaign bypasses Gmail filters, employs Google Docs

Every now and then, online crooks and spammers use Google Docs to host phishing forms or documents with embedded malicious links. One such spam campaign is currently delivering a simplistic email with a link to a Google Docs to inboxes around the world.

Stanford researcher Elie Bursztein spotted it and was intrigued by the fact that the email effectively bypassed Google’s spam filters – something that doesn’t happen very often. So, he decided to see where the link will take him, and it took him to an untitled document touting fake/novelty university diplomas and degrees.

What’s interesting is that Google Docs displays the number of people who viewed the document, so he could see that many people were and are checking it out – which means they followed the link.

“I saw 7 other people taking a look at the document while writing this post so it is clear that this campaign is active and ‘successful’,” he commented and wished he could see the click-through rate of the link embedded in the document.

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Spam campaign bypasses Gmail filters, employs Google Docs