A new scam wants websites to cough up 5,000 Bitcoins to retain their Google AdSense access | Tech News

A new scam wants websites to cough up 5,000 Bitcoins to retain their Google AdSense access

Hackers are sending extortion mails to websites wherein they are threatening to block the websites’ Google AdSense access if their demand of 5,000 Bitcoins isn’t fulfilled.

By: HT CORRESPONDENT
| Updated on: Aug 20 2022, 19:32 IST
A new email extortion scam is threatening to cut websites’ access to Google AdSense.
A new email extortion scam is threatening to cut websites’ access to Google AdSense. (REUTERS)

Email based scams have become common these days. So far, we have heard about scammers targeting individual users for money. Now, a new report details a case wherein hackers are targeting websites for the same.

According to a report by Krebs On Security, hackers are sending extortion mails to websites wherein they are threatening to block the websites' Google AdSense access if their demand of 5,000 Bitcoins isn't fulfilled.

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The scam, as per the report, works by flooding a website with a high amount of traffic generated from AI bots. Doing so would trigger Google's anti-fraud measures that are aimed at ensuring that the clicks on the ads that are placed on a website are authentic, which would lead to the company banning the website from AdSense. And if this trend continues for long, the company would permanently suspend the website's AdSense account, cutting down the website's one of the most important sources of revenue.

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Now, the scammers are asking websites to cough up $5,000 bitcoin (worth $4,90,00,000) in order to not proceed with their AdSense attack.

Notably, the scope of this attack is not known at the moment. However, a website owner, whose website was recently targeted by the hackers, said that while he had initially dismissed the message earlier, a review of the AdSense traffic statistics showed "that detections in his AdSense invalid traffic report from the past month had increased substantially."

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Google has responded to the matter by saying that it had built "safeguards in place to prevent sabotage from succeeding".

"We encourage publishers to disengage from any communication or further action with parties that signal that they will drive invalid traffic to their web properties. If there are concerns about invalid traffic, they should communicate that to us, and our Ad Traffic Quality team will monitor and evaluate their accounts as needed," the company said in a statement.

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First Published Date: 18 Feb, 13:11 IST
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