Gmail Will Block These Attachments To Protect You From Ransomware

Whether you realize it or not, you use JavaScript every day. The websites you visit — including this one — are packed with it. JavaScript allows web coders and designers to do all kinds of incredibly complex and engaging things.

Whether you realize it or not, you use JavaScript every day. The websites you visit — including this one — are packed with it. JavaScript allows web coders and designers to do all kinds of incredibly complex and engaging things.


Image: Pexels

Image: Pexels

While it’s typically packaged neatly inside a web page’s code where you never see it, JavaScript can also be passed around as a file. Just like you can attach a Word document, some .JPG images, or a .PDF to an email you could attach a JavaScript .JS file to an email if you really wanted to.

You probably don’t want to, but some people do. Sometimes those people are programmers who need to share code with each other. Other times it might be a cybercriminal who’s trying to infect yet another victim.

That’s why Google has made the decision to start blocking JavaScript attachments in Gmail. The risks simply outweigh the benefits.

Anyone who really needs to share JavaScript code can do it dozens of different ways — via Google Drive, Pastebin, or GitHub, for example. And for those folks, this change will barely be an inconvenience.

Image: Google

Image: Google

As for the criminals, well… Google wants to make it as hard as possible for them to victimize Gmail users. Blocking JavaScript attachments will definitely help. Last year it became quite common for ransomware like Cryptowall and Locky to be pushed via JavaScript attachments. Even if they’re hidden inside a compressed .ZIP file, Gmail will still block them.

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