Here's Why Some Gmail Users Are Freaking Out About Spam In Their Sent Folder
Multiple Gmail users awoke Sunday morning to find that a bunch of spam that appeared to be sent from their accounts. The spam messages from their accounts were found in the sent items folder, but these weren’t emails that the users had sent themselves leaving many to think their accounts had been hacked.
One user who found sent spam in his account wrote on the Google help forums, "My email account has sent out 3 spam emails in the past hour to a list of about 10 addresses that I don’t recongnize[sic]. I changed my password immediately after the first one, but then it happened again 2 more times. The subject of the emails is weight loss and growth supplements for men advertisements. I have reported them as spam. Please help, what else can I do to ensure my account isn’t compromised??"
The content of the email sent by the affected accounts makes it clear that they are spam. The emails advertised questionable loans, male growth supplements, and other clearly spam topics. Some reports indicate that the emails appear to be linked to Telus, a telecommunication firm from Canada. The issue has been widespread enough that Telus issued an official statement that says it isn’t responsible for the spam.
There are currently spam emails being circulated which are disguised to appear from https://t.co/rpexKwMFiR. We can confirm they are not being generated by TELUS nor are they being sent from our server. We are working with our 3rd party vendors to resolve the issue. pic.twitter.com/LzYZMTU0ZN— TELUS Support (@TELUSsupport) April 22, 2018
Some of the users who found spam in their sent items folder had two factor authentication enabled, making hacking unlikely to be the reason for the spam. One such user wrote, "My account is totally secured and has no access from anywhere but my PC and my phone. Along with 2 factor authentication. Still getting these spam emails from ‘myself’, come on google fix it up."
Google is aware of the issue and is working on figuring out what's going on. A response from Google's Seth Vargo to a person complaining about the issue has confirmed a fix is in the works.
Hey Alex, thanks for letting us know. Our engineering teams are aware of this and are working on a resolution :)— Seth Vargo (@sethvargo) April 22, 2018
Gmail has been changing of late with a new web interface leaking that shows a move to Material design. Gmail has also been tipped to gain a confidential mode with self-destructing messages and recipient identity verification.