Google tells Iranian users to check if their Gmail accounts have been hacked

Graham Cluley
Graham Cluley
@[email protected]

Iranian flagGoogle is advising *all* its users in Iran to change their Gmail passwords, and check that their Google accounts have not been compromised.

In a blog post, Google said that it was directly contacting users in Iran who may have been hit by a man-in-the-middle attack.

As you’ve no doubt been reading on Naked Security, the threat emerged after disgraced Dutch SSL certificate authority DigiNotar was compromised.

Screenshot of Google blog post

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As Google, correctly points out – it’s not just a question of changing passwords. Even if hackers who broke into your Gmail account no longer know your password, there are still things they could have done *while* they had access to your email which will allow them to continue to monitor your communications.

For instance, it’s possible for someone to have tampered with your Gmail account to silently forward all messages that you receive to another account.

Gmail forwarding

Similarly, it’s a good dea to check that no-one has been unexpectedly authorised to read and send email from your account.

Gmail delegation

Although ensuring that their Gmail has not been compromised will probably be the most obvious concern for many users, it’s worth bearing in mind that other Google apps – such as Google Docs – could be at risk if you suffered from the man-in-the-middle attack.

Take Google’s advice seriously and take steps to ensure that your account isn’t compromised.

Further reading: Check out my much more detailed article about “How to stop your Gmail account being hacked”.

Graham Cluley is an award-winning keynote speaker who has given presentations around the world about cybersecurity, hackers, and online privacy. A veteran of the computer security industry since the early 1990s, he wrote the first ever version of Dr Solomon's Anti-Virus Toolkit for Windows, makes regular media appearances, and is the co-host of the popular "Smashing Security" podcast. Follow him on Twitter, Mastodon, Threads, Bluesky, or drop him an email.

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