TDR

Hijacked Google+ links directed users to random, room booking sites

January 16, 2014

A news website that reports search engine issues revealed that thousands of links for hotel listings on Google+ had been “hijacked” by an unknown party.

On Tuesday, Danny Sullivan, the founding editor of Search Engine Land, detailed in an article how the incident also affected the integrity of information found on Google Maps and through Google searches. As a result of the hijacking, website links listed under hotels on Google+ were replaced with URLs leading to a third-party room booking service.

In a Wednesday article in The Guardian, Karim Mawani, director of HotelsWhiz.com, said that the issue hurt his business, which was ultimately “penalized by Google”, after hijacked links directed users to his company website.

The hijacking is speculated to be the work of a Google “insider.”

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