Be Careful: Google Is Accidentally Sending Gchats To The Wrong People: Updated

Uh-oh, I got the ill communication! A recent software update to Hangouts may be the culprit, but Google is currently investigating the issue.

Update: Google has now posted that the issue has been resolved. "All services are gradually returning to normal. We will update when full service is restored."

Some of Google's Gchat and Hangout users are having their communications rerouted to unintended recipients. The glitch is causing unrest among those who rely on the two Google services (reasonably so), and could potentially be a serious breach of data.

The issue is reportedly affecting people who are using gchat who haven't yet upgraded to Hangouts. Google has merely upgraded its Talk Apps Status page, saying it is investigating the issue. Peter Szilagyi from Budapest should perhaps have the last--and best--word on this, however.

Anyone remember Chatroulette--or, more recently, this one?

[Image: Flickr user gruntzooki aka Cory Doctorow]

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30 Comments

  • Richard

    There are simply too many cases of Google not respecting people's privacy.

    People get caught up in sophisticated debates about technology and privacy in the information age and other such things.  I think people should simplify the conversation.  

    Here are two questions you might ask yourself:

    (A) Is the behavior rude or disrespectful?
    (B) Do you want to associate with those who treat you rudely and/or disrespectfully?

    It may be time for people to raise the bar and demand respect be part of each and every product or service.   But that's just me.  Maybe wanting to be treated in a mannerly and respectful manner is old fashioned.

  • ScotFree

     How about just not using google? Oh wait, its SO important to "chat" that google can just go on shafting you, and you just smile and bend over farther.

  • greggebhardt

    Why does it matter as nothing going through google is private anyway.

  • Seashell

    Yes, the wrong people are all in the whitehouse.  Big Brother is not just a show on CBS.

  • Anonymous

    You should boycott Google instead of being useful tools for the NSA.  What a bunch of pathetic fools.  You deserve what Google dishes out to you.

  • Glen3101

    If you are stupid enough to use any google services, then you deserve this too.

  • H. G.

    Dammit, the message I sent my girlfriend went to my wife. Ugh! Freakin Google ruined my marriage!

  • PainInMyASS

    I guess when you have back doors for every conceivable Govt agency, all kinds of things can start walking down halls and going places they were never intended.  Thats what happens when you build a network that no single person could ever comprehend, it becomes unmanageable and all kinds of peepers can happen by choice or by pure accident.

    I think ol Schmidt missed it on the goal of not being evil, Google is down right sinister.  I try to stay away from Google like the plague.

  • Didi

    It hasn't been "resolved". Financial loss, job loss, humiliation and embarrassment, relationship breakdown and general mental damage have all resulted. I would really like to see a class action as to what has been a pretty major security stuff-up. 

  • FedUpBob

    I guess that Obama will be looking to hire some senior Google employee as his Privacy Czar. 

  • Denny Crane

    It could be worse- at least your messages aren't sending you across airport runways... like some other company.

  • Hsialin

    NSA created google, it was even known  back then when it happened that the NSA owned it,

  • Olden Atwoody

    Kind of makes sense.  How would the two moroins that run it ever have really figured out such new algorithms?

  • Tomas Tillo

    The problem is even worst than reported in this thread. I am receiving emails that are sent to a person who has my same name without a period between the first and last name on the email address. In other words, I am receiving emails in my john.doe@gmail.com mailbox that are sent to johndoe@gmail.com. This is a big problem because I am sure it cuts both ways. Be very cautious when using a gmail address, this has been happening for at least a year. It is next to impossible to make Google aware of this problem.

  • mehrheit

    GMAIL is supposed to work like that - the dot's don't matter. Nor does capitalization. Also, you can append anything you want to the end of your username as long as you preceed it with a plus sign. For example: Jo.h.n.D.oe+SPAMMER@gmail.com would go to the same inbox as plain old johndoe@gmail.com. If you're getting other people's mail it is due to a typo on the part of the sender, not some dastardly gmail bug.

  • Nbr 1

     The "dots" SHOULD matter.  If they don't, it's a screwed up way of doing business.  ANY different character in the email address SHOULD make it a different address.  If things get ignored, then it's out of control and unusable.

  • Glen3101

     Google/Gmail don't care a bit about your privacy or your problems.  Again, if you are naive enough or just plain stupid enough to have anything to do with google, then you have nothing to cry about.  Good for you.  Google is evil.  That has been proven over and over again so if you continue to use them, then just shut up and take what they give you.