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PSA: Be very careful with emails about your Google Photos being published

The chances are very high that the Google Photos email about how your pics have been "published" is fake.

Published onJune 25, 2020

Google Photos logo on smartphone next to imaging accessories stock photo 1
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority
  • You should be aware that spam messages posing as Google Photos emails are entering inboxes.
  • If you see an email like this, treat it as suspect. It is very likely a scam email.
  • The best thing to do is mark the email as Spam or Junk and make sure you don’t visit any websites or download any programs linked to the message.

Today, we spotted a Google Photos email in our mailbox that claimed our photos had been “published”. Obviously, we became concerned that we mistakenly hit a button somewhere and published who knows what to who knows where.

That feeling, of course, is what this Google Photos email is banking on. Upon quick inspection, though, we were relieved to find that the email was just spam and trying to trick us into visiting a sketchy website to download sketchy software.

Related: 10 best security apps for Android that aren’t anti-virus apps

If you get an email like this, do yourself a favor and either delete it or approach it with the highest scrutiny.

Google Photos email spam: What should you look for?

The Google Photos email you receive might look very official. It might even have authentic Google logo images that are pulled directly from addresses. This is a trick scammers use to give their messages a legitimate look and thus make you more apt to take it seriously.

Just because an email has official-looking logos or links to professional-looking sites doesn't mean it's genuine!

However, when you click any of the links in the message, you won’t be taken to Google Photos or any other Google-branded property. Instead, you’ll visit some other website where you will likely be instructed to download a browser extension or another piece of software. This is what you never want to do.

Chances are high that the software you download from that site will be some form of malware, possibly even ransomware. You absolutely want to avoid these malicious programs.

What to do if you get a suspicious email

If you get a Google Photos email similar to what we’ve described here — or any other message that seems suspect — the best thing you can do is mark it as Spam or Junk. Every time someone does this it flags the sender and makes it more likely that future messages will go directly to not only your spam folder but other people’s too.

If it’s too late and you’ve already downloaded a program of some sort, don’t open it. Just delete it and you should be OK.

Remember to always approach emails with the utmost scrutiny and be on the lookout for anything that seems off. Stay safe out there!

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