Gmail is rolling out a new service that will let you call phones in the US and Canada for free right from your email. [More]
If you like to use a plus sign to create unique addresses in Gmail or another mail system for filtering, spam tracking, or other purposes, don’t try it with Southwest Airlines. Instead of returning an error, Southwest will simply fling your message into the ether, never to be heard from again. [More]
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Google has plans to make Gmail “more social,” according to an anonymous source. The idea is to make it easier to post links and share status updates. Meanwhile, Facebook is apparently planning a “Gmail killer.” [More]
Will says his Gmail account disappeared on him, wiping out nearly a decade of email memories. [More]
Don’t install the iPhone app iDrive Lite if you value the privacy of your contact list. Avi Muchnick, one of the developers behind the free, consumer-friendly online graphics suite Aviary, used iDrive to backup his Gmail contact list when switching to a new phone. The next day, he awoke to discover that iDrive’s parent company, Pro Softnet Corp, had spammed every single entry in his contact list without his permission.
Andy logged in to Gmail on Sunday, and his friend Jeff started to chat with him. Things seemed a bit off, but Andy really became suspicious when Jeff asked him to wire $500 to an injured friend in Nigeria. The real Jeff, of course, was off playing XBOX and has no friends in Nigeria. Like the scammers hitting up people’s friends for money via Facebook, thieves can log in to your e-mail and chat accounts, pretending to be you.
Losing access to your GMail account is tantamount to banishment from the internet, but Google’s non-existent customer support makes it nearly impossible for rightful owners to regain control of their accounts. The New York Times asked Google why they couldn’t afford to offer phone-based customer support, a simple question Google needed three people to answer.
Gmail recently rolled out a change to its settings, where now you can permanently turn on SSL encryption. Do it now—your personal data will thank you for it. Besides, it’s going to get a lot easier to hack Gmail sessions very soon, because some guy is planning on releasing a hacking tool to the public in order to force Google to implement better security. [monkey_bites]
If your email account is with Google or Yahoo, your days of seeing phishing emails from fake eBay or PayPal addresses should be over. Google announced last week that it’s now using DomainKeys to verify messages really do come from paypal.com or ebay.com—if they don’t, they never even make it to your In Box. This is possible because eBay and PayPal are now making sure “that all their email is signed with DomainKeys and DKIM.” Since Yahoo! also uses DomainKeys and DKIM (they developed it, in fact), phishing attacks for Yahoo! Mail accounts should also disappear.
Brad Taylor, Google’s chief spam “watchdog,” suspects that spammers may actually be giving up as filters becomes more sophisticated and fewer of their messages get through.
Google won’t disclose numbers, but the company says that spam attempts, as a percentage of e-mail that’s transmitted through its Gmail system, have waned over the last year. That could indicate that some spammers have gotten discouraged and have stopped trying to get through Google’s spam filters.
Other experts disagree, claiming that spam is on the rise.
Considering Google’s penchant for automated emails and redirects to Help files when things go wrong, what would you do if someone hacked your Gmail account and had access to all your emails, Google documents, etc etc? [Google Blogoscoped]
My spam has gone down like a million % since switching to Gmail from Yahoo mail. This amusing video shows you some of the techniques Google uses to keep spam out of your inbox. Just about all the spam we get is as a result of the forward set up from our old yahoo to our new gmail account.
UPDATE: Gmail says they accidentally disabled a huge swatch of user accounts in an attempt to fight a large spammer network, and is actively reinstating these accounts.