Webmaster Tools and Google Analytics: Dangerous Security Flaw?

djbaxter

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WebmasterTools in Dangerous Security Flaw
by David Naylor
27 November 2012

It has been seen tonight that WebmasterTools has suffered a major security hole and opened up and reverified all old accounts. What does this mean to the SEO community?

From initial glance at our WMT?s accounts we now have regained access to every old account we have previously been given access to, whether that is a previous client or maybe a site that came to us for some short term consultancy. What is also quite amusing (if you look on the funny side) is that you can see who won the client or who you won the client from.

On a more serious note though, now that WMT is so much more powerful than it ever was there is a serious risk that damage could be caused to sites by people who no longer have permission to make changes. Things like disavow link lists, deindex urls or the entire site, redirect urls, geolocation alterations .. a whole world of pain.

Oh? and this also is the same for Google Analytics too.. its going to potentially be a late night! Hopefully the messages that we have sent to Matt Cutts will be seen and actioned quickly.
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djbaxter

Administrator
Joined
Jun 28, 2012
Messages
2,652
Google Fixes Webmaster Tools Security Breach

This morning, Google sent us a statement saying:


For several hours yesterday a small set of Webmaster Tools accounts were incorrectly re-verified for people who previously had access. We've reverted these accounts and are investigating ways to prevent this issue from recurring.


It is unclear if any damage was done over that 12 hour period but for some, it was incredibly nerve racking knowing that some people may have unauthorized access to your Webmaster Tools account and do some serious damage to your site in Google.
 

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