Don’t be surprised if the next time you open a file in Google Drive, you find a warning that the document you’re planning to open could be a virus or some other type of malware.
The messages are part of a preventive online security campaign advertised by google which seeks to prevent the spread of malware, ransomware and phishing on Drive, its cloud file storage platform.
Alerts appear as a yellow ribbon at the top of the screen that reads “this file looks suspicious, it could be used to steal your personal information.” Despite the warning, the user is free to download the file if they wish.
Alerts will appear in all Google Gocs, Sheets, Slides, and Drawings files opened through Google Drive.
If the measure seems exaggerated to you, it is worth noting that in May 2021, Google discovered a network of emails with malware to steal YouTube account information. According to Google, the malware was distributed in 1.6 million emails.
The new warnings are part of an intense campaign by Google to improve security in Drive.
Last December, it enabled an alert service that warns users about possible violations of Drive’s usage policy. If Google detects that a file hosted on Drive violates its usage policy, it will block access to the file.
While the list of files that could violate the usage policy is extensive, Google’s new guideline seeks, broadly speaking, to prevent Drive from being used to host piracy, violent content, terrorist propaganda or child pornography.