Google Search and Drive erroneously marks links to research papers and websites of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) as malware.
Google Search results for the ACM website, ACM Digital Library research papers, and contact pages mark links to ACM domains as malicious, which means clicking on one of the acm.org, dl.acm.org or libraries.acm.org links lead to an “interstitial” that is hosted on Google’s redirect page and warns users of malicious activity associated with the identified site.
The problem is blocking all traffic to ACM domains from Google Search results. To navigate the issue, ACM visitors must manually copy and paste the intended link into the address bar of their web browser.
Google shows users web pages that are flagged for malicious activity to warn those who navigate to compromised sites. However, ACM’s domain is not compromised, and a further investigation on Google’s “diagnostic page” showed that the site was secure.
The faulty blockade was first reported by Germany-based PhD researcher, Maximilian Golla of the Max Planck Society. Gola said that Google had restricted one of his Google Docs files, which contained links to ACM research, because it “violates” Google’s Term of Service.
Google has yet to disclose details about the reason for the flawed restrictions, although this is not the first time this has happened.
The sources for this piece include an article in BleepingComputer.