This new warning in Google Drive means there may be a scammer after you

Millions of people use Google’s suite of productivity tools. Unfortunately, this makes them a big target for hackers. Earlier this year, criminals used the comments feature in Google Docs to spread malware.

The company is now taking steps to address files that violate its terms of service. If files violate Google’s terms of service or program policies, they can be restricted.

The measure could potentially prevent malware from being spread. Read on for the new security measures Google is taking to protect potential victims.

Here’s the backstory

First announced at the Cloud Next 2021 conference, Google introduced an alert system when it detects potentially malicious files in your Google Drive. The warning banner already appears for Google Workspace users when opening suspicious Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Drawings.

The feature is steadily rolling out to more users, although it may take a few weeks to reach you. Most users use the default (Scheduled Release) for updates, which are available at least a week after release.

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“Google automatically evaluates all files shared with you from outside your organization for phishing or malware. If detected, Google will block your access to the file to protect you,” the tech giant explained.

What can you do about it?

The new security measure is enabled by default through Google, so you don’t need to do anything else. Unfortunately, it may only be a matter of time before cyber criminals find a way around it.

Here are some steps you can take to make sure you don’t download files that could infect your device with malware:

Even if the warning doesn’t appear, never open or download files that strangers share with you. When you receive an email stating that a document has been shared with you, you should carefully check all the details of the email. Make sure it comes from someone you trust and that the sender’s email address is legitimate. There are several settings in Google Drive to control what content users can share with you. If you don’t use the sharing option, you can disable it. Have reliable antivirus software installed on all your devices. We recommend our sponsor, TotalAV. Get an annual subscription now for only $19 at That’s over 85% off the regular price.

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