Google warns about state-sponsored attacks for second time this year
Google warns about state-sponsored attacks for second time this year

Google has issued a second warning to users of its Gmail service that state-sponsored attackers may be attempting to compromise their account or computer.

According to the New York Times, Google sent the message to users after it picked up thousands more instances of cyber attacks than it anticipated.

In its original warning, Google said that a subset of its users may be the target of state-sponsored attacks and its vice president of security engineering Eric Grosse said that it believed that it was its duty to be proactive in notifying users about attacks or potential attacks.

Mike Wiacek, a manager on Google's information security team, said on Tuesday that since Google started to alert users to state-sponsored attacks three months ago, it had gathered new intelligence about attack methods and the groups deploying them.

He said the company was using that information to warn ‘tens of thousands of new users' that they may have been targets. He also said that Google had seen an increase in state-sponsored activity coming from the Middle East. He declined to name particular countries, but said the activity was coming from ‘a slew of different countries' in the region.

Google was targeted by the Aurora attacks in January 2010 and recent research by Symantec found that the group behind those incidents was still active.