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rconner
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...(tracking link)

spam contains two links to googlepages.com. One of them had apparently been shut down by Google, the other was still live. So, we have some evidence that Google is closing these....

Yes, well, concerning the first of those pages, LinkScanner says
There was 1 threat found.

DANGEROUS: LinkScanner Online has found

[search engine hijack]

Detail: Exploit: Warezov sploit launcher

This is actually a new obfuscation of several common exploits, the newest being SetSlice, which, at the time of initial detection, was being used to install the Warezov worm on vulnerable systems.

And the second one, the "unsubscribe" link is the 404 with
This site has been disabled for violations of our Program Policies.
So, well done googlepages! ;)

The fact that you have (presumably) jumped through their hoops to report TOS violation and they still host an exploit can only leave them (potentially) especially vulnerable in the event of the (hypothetical) innocent surfer suffering harm on their "premises". IMO (IANAL) they are certainly delinquent in connection with their duty of care. Since they are in the delightful position of owning and controlling the records of their specific dereliction it probably has no impact - although public discussion certainly would undermine any position of plausible deniability.

In a different context - forum spamming "elsewhere" - I have lately taken to leaving reports/comments on SiteAdvisor. No particular result yet (but I have not been in a position to report an apparent exploit, "only" spamming - or I have forgotten if I did found exploits in "my" patch) but every little bit helps, I suppose, and maybe gives a few timid but unprotected and generally clueless souls (if there are such) a fighting chance when there are exploits. And it is another public venue through which to undermine claimed ignorance on Google's part. Why the heck don't they scan their own pages anyway? Yeah, I know, it would cost money and why should they when their competitors don't? {sigh} the further failings of the "consumer(ist)" society.

Thanks for not posting that exploit site out in the open by the way.

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Got a Canadian Pharmacy spam today with another Googlepages URL used as a redirection. I reported it via the Goglepages complaint page. I also took the opportunity to check on the others I reported and found that two more had been closed within 3 days of appearance. So, apparently, Google does deal with these (although perhaps only if they are spewing malware).

-- rick

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 4 weeks later...

I've been tracking most of the Googlepages redirects I've gotten since early November, and the results indicate that Google does seem to be taking some action.

Of 17 links I reported up through the 17th of this month, 13 of them were closed (most within a week of my receipt). Of the four danglers, one is for a defunct casino site, one for a pharma site, and two for a watch pedlar.

I reported two more of these just today, too early to tell what will happen, but the spammers still appear to be plowing this furrow.

You can report these links to Google via http://www.google.com/support/pages/bin/re...Type=abuse_spam. I generally paste the spam into the message field, along with a note indicating that the link is used for redirection to a spam site.

-- rick

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You can report these links to Google via http://www.google.com/support/pages/bin/re...Type=abuse_spam. I generally paste the spam into the message field, along with a note indicating that the link is used for redirection to a spam site.

That's a good link that I've been looking for! Have you found one to report spam with the google search links in them such as <http://www.google.off.ai/searchblahblahblah_dont_click>??

Eric

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Have you found one to report spam with the google search links in them such as <http://www.google.off.ai/searchblahblahblah_dont_click>??
I assume you refer to the use of search links or IFL links to point to spam websites. No, I don't know a good way to report those, although I imagine there must be a way for people to report search-engine abuse. To Google, however, 'search-engine abuse' usually just means attempts to artificially inflate page rank. Still, it doesn't hurt us to help Google not to be 'evil,' so perhaps someone can come up with such a link.

-- rick

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Was going to respond to this a few days back, but ran into some strange issues.... revisiyin this Topic while actually working in another ....

Unlike the 'spam report' link referenced above, this one is a web-form that "gets passed to the engineers directly" .. point being, there doesn't seem to be a built-in section to allow for 'personal' conversation about the issue ... anyway, here's the link; Help us maintain the quality of Google search results

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Thanks! Another good link!

Was going to respond to this a few days back, but ran into some strange issues.... revisiyin this Topic while actually working in another ....

Unlike the 'spam report' link referenced above, this one is a web-form that "gets passed to the engineers directly" .. point being, there doesn't seem to be a built-in section to allow for 'personal' conversation about the issue ... anyway, here's the link; Help us maintain the quality of Google search results

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Yes, good one Wazoo. Put to use already, discovering during research on Canadian pharmacy links that the promising Google link to pages uder www.psy.mq.edu.au actually redirect without notice to yet another pharms peddler.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just a further update on my own poor efforts to track this phenomenon.

I use the Googlepages abuse reporting form (http://www.google.com/support/pages/bin/re...Type=abuse_spam) every time I get one of these, and from what I can see the latest ones disappear within as little as 24 hours of my report. Not that I fancy that I alone was the cause, I imagine they probably get many other reports on these now.

-- rick

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