Urgent warning issued for Google users about widespread scam

An urgent warning has been issued by tech giant, , to ignore scammers attempting to woo unsuspecting targets with a prize.

Users of Google’s email service, Gmail, have been told to look out for and delete a scam email claiming the company is offering a ‘prize’ temp mail for facebook making the ‘18.25 billionth search’ through its search engine.

To claim the prize, users must complete a survey that asks for the target’s personal information and credit card information.

The scam is the most recent iteration of the ‘billionth search’ variety, with previous attempts utilising pop-up or banner ads to deceive targets.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, 65 per cent of Australians had received some sort of scam offer or request during the 2021-22 financial year.

Google users have been urged to delete a scam email in their Gmail inbox claiming they will get a price for completing the ‘18.25 billionth’ search on their search engine (pictured)

To identify the scam, mnet account Gmail users should look for an email claiming ‘Congratulations!You are the lucky Google user’.

‘Every 10 millionth search is reached worldwide, we will proclaim a lucky user to send out a thank-you gift,’ the scam email reads.

‘Based on out last 7 days’ [sic] user data, you are the lucky user!

‘Please select your reward below and claim it by following the instruction [sic].’ 

Google has warned any advertising or emails from the company will not include offers of a prize.

The company advises users to report emails with sweepstakes, lotteries or similar tactics. 

Australians lost a record $3.1billion to scams over the course of 2022, with investment, remote access and payment redirection scams being the most damaging.

‘As scammers become increasingly sophisticated in their tactics, it is clear a coordinated response across government, law enforcement and the private sector is essential to combat scams more effectively,’ Catriona Lowe, ACCC Deputy Chair, said.

Australians lost a record $3.1billion to scams over 2022 through more ‘sophisticated’ attacks,  however more Australians are reporting scam attempts to authorities (stock image)

While scammers are targeting Australians at a greater rate, tamp mail.com more scams are being reported to authorities.

‘The results of The Personal Fraud Survey showed that 65 per cent of people received a scam offer or request in 2021-22, up from 55 per cent in the previous year,’ William Milne, ABS head of crime and justice statistics, said.

‘While more people were exposed to scams this year, we found that the number responding to scams has actually decreased to 552,000. 

‘The survey shows that 2.7 per cent of Australians responded to a scam in 2021-22 down from 3.6 per cent in 2020-21.’

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