Google has made some changes to Google Workspace comment notifications in an effort to protect users against malware and phishing attacks.
Previously, email notifications that were automatically sent to a user when someone mentioned them in a comment in a Google Workspace document only included the comment and the commenter’s name.
Now, however, Google is also including the commenter’s email address in that notification, so that users can better assess the legitimacy of the message.
“We hope that by providing this additional information, this will help you feel more confident that you’re receiving a legitimate notification rather than a spam or phishing attempt by a bad actor,” Google says.
The feature will be automatically enabled for all Google Workspace and legacy G Suite Basic and Business customers within the next several weeks. Users with personal Google accounts will also benefit from this update.
For at least a year and a half, attackers have abused Google’s email notifications for Google Docs comments to direct victims to malicious websites. The attackers create documents on the service and add comments – which include links to the malicious sites – that mention the target’s email address.
With the Internet giant’s services typically on enterprise ‘allow lists’, Google’s notification emails are guaranteed to land in the victim’s inbox. The updated notifications should help users spot similar phishing attempts.