Google Warns Myanmar Journalists of Gmail Attacks

Several journalists have been targeted by government-sponsored attacks

Several journalists in Myanmar (Burma) have reported seeing notifications from Google that their accounts may have been targeted in so-called "state-sponsored" attacks. Google has been working to notify users of this type of attacks for a while now.

Journalists in Myanmar, but also some who cover Myanmar but are located in other countries, have started seeing the notifications last week.

Google doesn't reveal how it discovers these attacks and it won't do so any time soon, presumably, to prevent governments from working around the detection method.

Myanmar has only recently started opening up, but there are already a few independent organizations who report on issues they wouldn't have been able even a few years ago.

One of the biggest news organization in the country, Eleven Media, was targeted, but so were other independent journalists.

Last year, Google started alerting users when it saw signs that accounts were being targeted in state-sponsored attacks. In many countries, journalists, activists and anyone seen as dangerous by the government, are targeted by attacks some more sophisticated than others.

Google can't do much about that, but it can try to thwart the attacks. Even if Google is successful in fighting off an attack, the notifications may help those targeted take better precautions online.

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