Google to flag sites with deceptive download buttons

Bradley Wint
Apr 13, 2016 12:33am AST

Good Guy Google is at it again, making the Internet a bit safer one step at a time.

Social engineering is one of the biggest tools used by hackers today to gather information from unsuspecting victims. As a employee in a bank (working in online banking), social engineering is one of the leading tactics used in phishing emails and phone calls to gather login credentials from clients who may not be familiar with the proper safety measures when browsing online.

Google has stepped in to help curb social engineering by warning visitors of websites that have fake/deceptive download buttons in an attempt to prevent users from accidentally clicking on a malware laden link. These types of links are especially prevalent on porn and other warez/illegal download websites.

Users encountering sites like these will see a warning message similar to the one below. These warnings are similar to general malware alerts you come across from time to time when Google picks up malware that tries to download itself onto readers’ computers.


Google plans to block sites if there are buttons based on the following criteria.

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  • Pretend to act, or look and feel, like a trusted entity — like your own device or browser, or the website itself.
  • Try to trick you into doing something you’d only do for a trusted entity — like sharing a password or calling tech support.

If you haven’t seen any of these buttons, here are some samples to work with.


Three cheers for Google!

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